Posts Tagged ‘Jinping’

South China Sea: One Year After The Philippines Win At The Permanent Court of Arbitration — Brilliant Statecraft or Treason?

July 12, 2017

By Ellen Tordesillas

Posted at Jul 12 2017 02:46 AM

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One of the good things that President Duterte has done was to rekindle relations with China which reached its lowest ebb during the administration of Benigno Aquino III.

Never mind that during the election campaign, he rode on the anti-China sentiments of most Filipinos fueled by the pro-American leanings of Aquino and his Foreign Secretary, Albert del Rosario.

Remember, a standard in Duterte’s campaign speech was his boast that he will ride on a jet ski to one of the islands in the disputed Spratlys and plant the Philippine flag. He would kiss the flag to dramatize his promise. Once in Malacanang, he was asked when he was going to jetski to Spratlys and he replied it was a joke. He said he didn’t even know how to swim.

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In the guise of independent foreign policy, Duterte didn’t just cozy up to China. He attacked the United States when then President Barack Obama reminded him to respect human rights amid reports of rampant killings in connection with his anti-illegal drugs campaign.

His foreign policy moves can be likened to a pendulum that swung from extreme right to extreme left. Today marks first year anniversary of the ruling of the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, Netherlands on the case filed by the Philippines against China on the latter’s activities in the disputed waters of the South China Sea.

China did not participate in the Arbitral Court proceedings.

It was a major victory for the Philippines. The Arbitral Court declared invalid China’s nine-dashed line map which covers some 85 percent of the whole South China which infringes on the economic exclusive zones of other countries namely the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia and Brunei.

The Arbitral Court also ruled that China’s  artificial islands – rocks that were turned into garrisons through reclamation – in the disputed South China Sea do not generate entitlements under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea such as economic exclusive zone (220 nautical miles from the shore) and extended continental shelf (350 nautical miles).

As to Scarborough or Panatag Shoal, which is within the Philippine EEZ, the Arbitral Court said it’s a traditional fishing ground of Philippine, Chinese, Vietnamese and fishermen of other nationalities and should be maintained as such.

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Filipino fishermen had been denied access to the area since April 2012 after a two-month stand off between Chinese and Philippine Coastguards following arrest by a Philippine warship of Chinese fishermen in Scarborough shoal. Two Chinese ships remained even after the Aquino government withdrew its ships.

Duterte takes pride that because of his friendship with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Filipino fishermen are now allowed to fish in the area, which is being guarded by two Chinese ships.

It’s like a battered wife thankful that the husband has stopped beating her.

Duterte’s critics have scored his deference to China even  echoing  the position of China that historically South China Sea is theirs  as the name states.

In an ambush interview last April. Duterte said, “They really claim it as their own, noon pa iyan. Hindi lang talaga pumutok nang mainit. Ang nagpainit diyan iyong Amerikano. Noon pa iyan, kaya (It goes way back. The issue just did not erupt then. What triggered the conflict were the Americans. But it goes all the way back. That’s why it’s called) China Sea… sabi nga nila (they say) China Sea, historical na iyan. So hindi lang iyan pumuputok (It’s historical. The issue just had not erupted then) but this issue was the issue before so many generations ago.”

VERA Files fact-check about the name of South China Sea showed  that  South China Sea used to be called the Champa Sea, after the Cham people who established a great maritime kingdom in central Vietnam from the late 2nd to the 17th century.

That is contained in the book,  ‘The South China Sea Dispute: Philippine Sovereign Rights and Jurisdiction in the West Philippine Sea” by  Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio.

Carpio said it was the  Portuguese navigators who coined the name South China Sea.

“The ancient Malays also called this sea Laut Chidol or the South Sea, as recorded by Pigafetta in his account of Ferdinand Magellan’s circumnavigation of the world from 1519 to 1522. In Malay, which is likewise derived from the Austronesian language, laut means sea and kidol means south,” he further said.

“The ancient Chinese never called this sea the South China Sea. Their name for the sea was “Nan Hai” or the South Sea, he adds.

Reading Duterte’s blurting the Chinese line on the South China name, Ruben Carranza, former commissioner of the Presidential Commission on Good Government and now director of the Reparative Justice Program at the International Center for Transitional Justice, said “In football, that would be an ‘own goal.’

That’s when a player delivers the ball to the opponent’s goal.



 (Contains links to information about Vietnam’s renewed efforts to extract oil and gas from the sea bed)

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Dominance of the South China Sea, the Malacca Strait and the Indian Ocean would solidify China’s One Belt One Road project
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The international arbitration court in the Hague said on July 12, 2016, that China’s “nine dash line” was not recognized under international law — making the Vietnamese and Philippine claims on South China Sea islands valid and lawful.
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China’s aircraft carrier Liaoning at Hong Kong

China Business Execs Disappearing — Troubles for China and Hong Kong Stock Exchanges

November 25, 2015

By KELVIN CHAN, AP Business Writer

HONG KONG (AP) — The chairman of the Hong Kong arm of one of China’s biggest securities companies goes missing. The head of another firm resurfaces after months incommunicado. An executive at a film studio is detained for allegedly taking bribes.

They’re not plot outlines for crime novels but real life cases lifted from the normally dry Hong Kong stock exchange filings of Chinese companies over the past year.

The latest example came Monday when Guotai Junan International Holdings Ltd., the Hong Kong unit of a Chinese securities company, said it was unable to reach its chairman and chief executive Yim Fung since Nov. 18, sending its shares plummeting 12 percent.

Yim Fung, chairman and chief executive of Guotai Junan International Holdings Ltd., the Hong Kong unit of a Chinese securities company, attends an event in Hong Kong. The company said it was unable to reach Yim since Nov. 18, 2015, sending its shares plummeting 12 percent. Speculation swirled in local media that his disappearance was related to a recently launched investigation into a senior official at China’s securities regulator. (Apple Daily via AP)

Speculation swirled in local media that his disappearance was related to a recently launched investigation into a senior official at China’s securities regulator. That probe is part of a broad crackdown on the finance industry following China’s stock market meltdown over the summer. The company said it would appoint temporary replacements for Yim but declined further comment.

Such cases would be highly unusual for other global financial centers, but have become commonplace in Hong Kong, where the city’s stock exchange allows international investors to access an increasing number of mainland Chinese companies.

They highlight some of the risks of investing in China’s public companies, which operate in an opaque political and legal system, and face additional uncertainty because of President Xi Jinping’s ongoing and wide-ranging assault on corruption.

“It shows on one level that investing in some of these companies is quite risky,” said Jamie Allen, secretary general of the Asian Corporate Governance Association. “It also says a lot about the legal and political system in China. China doesn’t have a system of law like Hong Kong. In China you can disappear.”

Hong Kong is a former British colony that’s now a specially administered Chinese region with legal and financial systems that are separate from mainland China’s.

Among the Hong Kong-listed Chinese companies that have reported missing executives this year:

— Waste disposal company Dongjiang Environmental Co. last month suspended its shares from trading because it couldn’t reach Chairman Zhang Weiyang before a scheduled board meeting. The company said it later found out from Zhang’s family that he was being investigated “by the relevant authority” in China, although it didn’t say why.

— Shopping mall and department store operator Century Ginwa Retail Holdings said in September that its chairman, Wu Yijian, who went missing in mid-May, had resurfaced and gone back to work. He explained to the company that he was “assisting the relevant department” of the Chinese government with an investigation while he was away, without disclosing further details.

— China Aircraft Leasing Group said in June it was not able to reach its CEO, Mike Poon, after he submitted his resignation while he was in the middle of his annual vacation. The company said Poon didn’t give any reason for his departure in his resignation letter. Nor did he make any reference to news reports in Hong Kong and mainland Chinese that said he might be caught up in a Chinese government investigation into China Southern Airlines, which is a customer of China Aircraft Leasing.

Aside from disappearing executives, much more clear-cut announcements of alleged wrongdoing are a recurring theme at Hong Kong-listed Chinese companies.

Among the slew of cases this year, Alibaba Pictures Group Ltd., the film arm of the Chinese e-commerce giant, said one of its directors, Patrick Liu Chunning, was detained by the Public Security Bureau in connection with an investigation into the “alleged receipt of bribes” while Liu worked at Internet company Tencent Holdings. The company said the charges were unrelated to his employment at Alibaba.

A Chinese investigation is not always the only reason for an executive’s disappearance.

Pearl Oriental Oil Ltd. said in late September it was unable to contact Chairman Wong Kwan, who had been due in a Hong Kong court on fraud charges.

In October, police in Taiwan freed him from a gang of kidnappers who had been holding him captive for more than a month and demanding a ransom of HK$70 million ($9 million).