The Deteriorating Relationship between China and Philippines
The South China Sea is the world's largest sea. According to the Guinness Book of Records, it covers 1,148,500 square miles. In the last 2,500 years mariners for Malaysia, China and Indonesia navigated the South China Sea to trade sandalwood, silk, tea and spices. Today it carries roughly a third of the world's shipping and accounts for a tenth of the world's fish catch. China, Vietnam, Taiwan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Brunei and the Philippines all have 200-mile coastal economic zones in the South China Sea. All of these countries also claim the Spratly Islands which are in the middle of the sea.
About $5.3 trillion of global trade passes through the South China Sea each year, $1.2 trillion of which passes through U.S. ports. Below the South China Sea is an estimated $3 trillion worth of oil, gas and minerals. Fisheries in the South China Sea have been decimated by overfishing and polluting chemicals from shrimp farms and factories. By some estimates there is enough oil under the South China Sea to last China for 60 years.
The Spratly Islands are a group of tiny islands, reefs, shoals and rocks in the South China Sea claimed by China, Vietnam, the Philippines, Taiwan, Malaysia, Brunei and Indonesia. Most of the islands are submerged during high tide and generally regarded as uninhabitable. No one paid much attention to them until the 1960s when it was realized there could be mineral wealth and oil deposits located in the waters around them.
The main reason for the conflict within the Spratly islands lies in the territorial disputes and quarrels among the different countries. Natural resources include fish, guano, undetermined oil and natural gas potential. There are mainly 2 reasons for disputes to occur in these islands mainly:
1. The potential oil and natural gas reserves that lies dormant under the Spratly Islands.
2. Construction of the busiest port
Asia’s had been...