Strategic alliance with India, Myanmar to exploit sea resources mooted

C Raja Mohan, who is the head of strategic studies and distinguished fellow at the Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi, recently at a lecture in Dhaka had mooted the idea to form a trilateral group.

On Tuesday at a roundtable on ‘blue economy’, the idea also came up from the private sector who believed Bangladesh should have a “strategic partnership alliance” with India and Myanmar to exploit sea resources.

The suggestion came up as Bangladesh resolved the maritime dispute with the two neighbours “peacefully”.

Dhaka established its sovereign rights on more than 118,000 sq kms of territorial sea, 200 nautical miles (NM) of exclusive economic zone and 354 NM continental shelves from the Chittagong coast through international courts. Continue reading

Rare Earths Rouse Pentagon Fears

Specifically, to buy rare earth and other minerals that are crucial to the U.S. defense industry, and whose supply is currently at the mercy of China and its opaque political system. Japan, for example, was starved of rare earth elements during a maritime dispute with China in 2010. The United States wants to hedge that risk, given the damaging consequences an abrupt clampdown could entail. Continue reading

China Says Ready for ‘Escalation’ in Maritime Dispute With Philippines

China says it is ready to respond to “any escalation” by the Philippines, as a tense, month-long standoff continues over a disputed group of islands in the South China Sea.

The state-run Xinhua news agency on Tuesday quoted Vice Foreign Minister Fu Ying as saying Beijing is not optimistic about the dispute over the Scarborough Shoal, located about 230 kilometers off the northwestern Philippines.

On Monday, Fu summoned a top Philippine diplomat in Beijing to make a “serious representation” over the situation. Fu told Charge D’affaires Alex Chua that Manila was escalating tensions and making it more difficult to reach a negotiated settlement.

China says the islands, known as Huangyan in China, are a key part of Chinese territory and that any Philippine claim to them is baseless. The Philippines says the shoal is well within its internationally recognized exclusive economic zone.

The Philippines, China, Vietnam, Taiwan, Malaysia and Brunei all have competing claims in the South China Sea.  China claims nearly the entire energy-rich region.

Full article: China Says Ready for ‘Escalation’ in Maritime Dispute With Philippines (Voice of America)