LogIn LogOut

Philippines Must Find Way to Exploit South China Sea Resources, says President Marcos

December 2, 2022

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr, President of The Philippines - Credit: The Government of The Philippines (cropped)
President Ferdinand Marcos Jr, President of The Philippines - Credit: The Government of The Philippines (cropped)

The Philippines must find a way to explore for oil and gas in the South China Sea even without a deal with China, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr said on Thursday, emphasizing his country's right to exploit energy reserves in the contested waterway.

"That's a big thing for us, that is why we need to fight (for what is ours) and take advantage if there really is oil there," Marcos told reporters.

Talks over joint energy exploration between Manila and Beijing in the South China Sea had been terminated, the previous government said in June, citing constitutional constraints and issues of sovereignty.

"That's the roadblock, it is hard to see how we can resolve that. I think there might be other ways, so it does not have to be G-to-G (government-to-government)," Marcos said.

The Chinese embassy in Manila did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Marcos' remarks came after his foreign affairs secretary said in August Manila was open to new talks with China on oil and gas exploration and that a deal with China or any other country must comply with Philippine laws.

The Philippines relies heavily on imported fuel for its energy needs, making it vulnerable to supply shocks and rising oil prices, which have helped push up inflation to a near 14-year high.

During a three-day visit last week, U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris affirmed American defense commitments to the Philippines and reiterated support for a 2016 arbitration ruling that invalidated Beijing's expansive South China Sea claims.

The ruling, which China refused to recognize, states that the Philippines has sovereign rights to exploit energy reserves inside its 200-mile Exclusive Economic Zone.

Marcos said on Thursday, "we will have something more concrete" to announce by early next year about U.S. proposals to access Philippine military bases under the 2014 Enhanced Defence Cooperation Agreement. Washington has proposed adding more sites to the current five under EDCA, which allows for the rotation of U.S. military ships and aircraft at mutually agreed bases.

Philippine firm PXP Energy Corp, which holds an exploration permit in the Reed Bank, a disputed area, has had talks with China National Offshore Oil Corp on a joint venture. 

But Manila and Beijing's conflicting claims have prevented it from undertaking further drilling and reaching a deal with CNOOC.

(Reuters - Reporting by Neil Jerome Morales and Karen Lema Editing by Ed Davies)



Current News

Roc Oil Books Velesto Jack-up Rig

Roc Oil Books Velesto Jack-up Rig

All 47 Turbines Installed at Formosa 2 Offshore Wind Project

All 47 Turbines Installed at Formosa 2 Offshore Wind Project

Exxon Banks Record $56B Profit in '22

Exxon Banks Record $56B Profit in '22

Offshore Wind: Floating Wind is the Future

Offshore Wind: Floating Wind is the Future

U.S. Major ExxonMobil Faces $220M Tax Claim from Russia

U.S. Major ExxonMobil Faces $220M Tax Claim from Russia

Japan's Marubeni Starts Commercial Ops at Akita Offshore Wind Farm

Japan's Marubeni Starts Commercial Ops at Akita Offshore Wind Farm

Samsung Heavy Delivers LNG Pair for MISC

Samsung Heavy Delivers LNG Pair for MISC
photo

Subscribe for AOG Digital E‑News

AOG Digital E-News is the subsea industry's largest circulation and most authoritative ENews Service, delivered to your Email three times per week

https://accounts.newwavemedia.com