Carpio warns PH-China deal on Kaliwa Dam also offers patrimonial assets as collateral

ILOILO CITY- Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio on Thursday warned that the loan agreement between Philippines and China for the Kaliwa Dam project also offers patrimonial assets as collateral, which he said could mean Beijing is going after gas in the Reed Bank. The China-funded project in Infanta, Quezon has been on the spotlight of late, identified as the possible long-term solution to the water supply problem in Metro Manila.  Carpio said the deal bears terms similar with the Philippines’ loan deal with China for the Chico River…

Brunei defends planned embrace of extreme Islamic laws

 Brunei’s Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah attends the retreat session during the APEC Summit in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, last November. (REUTERS/David Gray/File Photo) Even amid a global backlash, Brunei has defended the use of Islamic laws that punish offenders with controversial methods, saying they are in place to “educate” and protect Islam. Brunei, a small oil-rich country of 400,000 near the South China Sea, will start implementing Sharia laws on April 3, punishing those who engage in homosexuality or adultery by death. They would also punish sodomy, adultery and rape with death by stoning, and theft…

‘message’ to Beijing over South China Sea

A tiny island off the coast of Japan has just become the centre of attention in the escalating game of brinkmanship being played out in the South and East China Seas. Ie Shima is only 23 square kilometres large. It has an airstrip, a fishing port and a population of about 4500. It’s just been attacked by a US Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU). It was all just practice. But the ‘surprise attack’ and rapid invasion of the island in Japan’s Okinawa archipelago demonstrated a key military capability just days before…

America Changes The Tone In South China Sea Disputes

(AP Photo/Bullit Marquez, File) ASSOCIATED PRESS America has assured the Philippines that it would come to that nation’s defense if it comes under attack in the South China Sea. That’s according to reports in early March, when Washington reaffirmed a defense code that Manila has sought to revise. And it’s something that could deter China’s aggression in the South China Sea, and help ease the geopolitical risks that hang over the financial markets of the region. China, Vietnam, and Philippines Shares Koyfin America’s assurance is a policy shift experts have been advocating for quite some-time. Ely…

Analyst: PH should separate economic ties, sea dispute with China

MANILA – The Philippines should separate its economic relations with China from their maritime row, an analyst said Saturday. Lyle Morris, a senior policy analyst of the RAND Corporation, said geopolitics and economics are not mutually inclusive. He said Manila can afford to have a stronger stance in the maritime dispute at the same time have a healthy bilateral trade and investment relations with Beijing. “I know that’s a difficult thing to do when you have China investing a lot of money in your country, but to the extent you…

Ardern’s mission in Beijing: Forging new ties with China amid growing uncertainty

The Prime Minister is set for difficult discussions around national security and trade when she meets with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Chinese Premier Li Keqiangon Monday. Speaking to media ahead of her departure, Jacinda Ardern said New Zealand’s longstanding “mature and resilient” relationship with its largest trading partner would cope with differences, and she will be reaching for areas of common ground to strengthen ties. Climate change will be one area where a new level of cooperation is likely to be sought. But Ardern’s first trip to Beijing, as…

China is using debt traps to control the South China Sea

Callum Burroughs, provided by Published 4:32 am EDT, Saturday, March 30, 2019 Dondi Tawatao/Getty China’s One Belt One Road project and massive infrastructure loans are helping to weaken opposition to its claims in the South China Sea.  The South China Sea is of critical importance to China which has created new islands through dredging for military bases, and consistently defended its claims despite protests and legal battles with other regional competitors.  Eyebrows were raised when Malaysia’s president told his Philippino counterpart that signing deals with China would leave you under their…

A U.S.-China War Scenario: How Would China’s Military Attack a “Great Wall in Reverse”?

Suppose the United States and its allies erect a “Great Wall in reverse,” deploying anti-ship, anti-aircraft, and anti-submarine armaments on and around the islands constituting the first island chain. China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) will not submit meekly while the allies curb its freedom of movement between its home waters and the Western Pacific. Instead, PLA soldiers, sailors, and aviators will try to puncture, outflank, or otherwise nullify the wall, regaining access to the wider world. They must—lest China forfeit the export and import trade that underwrites its “dream” of…