A Philippine alternative to China’s takeover of Subic shipyard

The possible Chinese purchase of a strategic shipyard in the Philippines has provoked an angry backlash in the country, reflecting simmering anxieties regarding President Rodrigo Duterte’s Beijing-friendly stance. But there is an alternative solution which would save jobs, build a key national industry and maintain security. Unable to service $1.3 billion in debt, the Philippine subsidiary of South Korean shipbuilder Hanjin filed for bankruptcy protection in January. It sought help from the Philippine government to rescue its Subic Bay facility, once the world’s fifth largest shipbuilding yard, and save the…

DND calls for ‘civilized’ conduct in West Philippine Sea as China sends militia

DND calls for ‘civilized’ conduct in West Philippine Sea as China sends militia MANILA, Philippines — Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana called on other concerned parties to respect Philippine sovereignty as the country repairs its facilities on Pag-asa Island in the West Philippine Sea. The Defense chief admitted that the presence of Chinese militia near artificial islands in the Spratlys did not come as a surprise as they have been in the area since 2012. “We expect other countries to respect Philippine sovereignty and to conduct themselves in a civilized manner…

Philippine senatorial candidate: Be wary of China’s ‘generosity’ | #AsiaNewsNetwork

“I think we should be very wary on signs of generosity on the part of China. There is always a give and take involved so that apparent generosity may come at a cost of greater aggressiveness of the part of China on the line,” Hilbay said on the sidelines of Ahon Laylayan Covenant signing at UP Bahay ng Alumni in Quezon City. Hilbay, who is running for senator in the May 2019 elections, made the comment after state-run Xinhua News Agency reported that China had established a maritime rescue center…

De Lima wants to mark July 12 as ‘West Philippine Sea Victory Day’

A lawmaker has filed a bill to declare July 12 as a special working holiday, seeking to mark the day an international tribunal ruled in favor of the Philippines in its arbitration case against China over the disputed West Philippine Sea.  In a statement, detained Sen. Leila de Lima said she filed Senate Bill No. 2201 in a bid to recognize July 12 of every year as a “West Philippine Sea (WPS) Victory Day.” On July 12, 2016, the United Nations-backed Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in The Hague, Netherlands…

US, Philippine Air Forces Conduct Bilateral Air Contingent Exchange Amid Uncertainties

The exercise highlights how the US-Philippines alliance soldiers on, even amid major tensions. By Christian Vicedo for The Diplomat February 07, 2019 From January 21 to February 1, 2019, the U.S. Pacific Air Forces together with the Philippine Air Force conducted the seventh iteration of the Bilateral Air Contingent Exchange-Philippines (BACE-P) at the Cesar Basa Air Base in Pampanga. Established in 2016, the BACE-P is a regular two-week joint exercise that seeks to facilitate the exchange of operational and technical expertise, improve interoperability, and enhance the air power capabilities of both…

PH to protest China’s rescue hub in West Philippine Sea once verified – DFA

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, February 2) — The Philippines will protest China’s reported construction of a maritime rescue center in the West Philippine Sea once it is verified, the country’s top diplomat said Saturday. In a series of tweets, Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Teodoro “Teddy Boy” Locsin Jr. agreed with Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio’s stance that the country should take action after China opened a new facility on Fiery Cross Reef or Kagitingan Reef. This is one of the China-occupied artificial islands in the Spratlys being claimed…

West Philippine Sea 2019: Policies to watch out for | #AsiaNewsNetwork

The Department of Energy (DOE) said early this month they have already asked the DFA to lift the ban after one of the service contractors formally sent a similar request late last year. The request comes after Chinese President Xi Jinping visited the Philippines in November, where both countries agreed to cooperate on oil and gas development. The rising tensions on territorial dispute between the Philippines and China prompted the Aquino administration to suspend exploration and drilling activities in the West Philippine Sea. “Whether the DFA’s more active and engaged…

West Philippine Sea 2019: Policies to watch out for

  Philippine soldier Tychico Octobre patrols a beach in Pagasa Island (Thitu Island) at the Spratly group of islands in the South China Sea, west of Palawan, on May 11, 2015. The Spratlys are considered a potential Asian flashpoint, and claimant nations have expressed alarm as China has embarked on massive reclamation activity. (AFP FILE PHOTO / POOL / RITCHIE B. TONGO / AFP PHOTO / POOL / RITCHIE B. TONGO) MANILA — The decision of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on the request to lift the moratorium covering…

Former Philippine president Benigno Aquino slams joint deal on South China Sea, cites different numbers from Duterte government | This Week In Asia

President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration has previously said it is open to joint energy exploration on the basis of a 60/40 revenue-sharing formula Yet according to the former leader, who is known as a China hawk, Beijing will get the lion’s share in any future deal By Bhavan Jaipragas 22 Jan 2019 / UPDATED ON 23 Jan 2019 Former Philippine President Benigno Aquino, known for his hardline views on China, on Tuesday appeared to contradict the terms of a deal his successor Rodrigo Duterte is making with China, as he sharply…

Photo shows Chinese fishing boats in Philippine waters

No, this photo does not show Chinese fishing boats in Philippine waters Published 8:28 AM, January 21, 2019 Updated 9:27 AM, January 21, 2019 A post shared by a Facebook group with over 200,000 followers claims to show numerous Chinese fishing boats which it says are in Philippine waters due to Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte. A reverse image search found that the image was taken by the Reuters news agency in China 4 years before Duterte was elected president. The post, which has been shared more than 200 times since…