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Chinese Foreign Minister and Philippine Foreign Secretary Talk About the Joint Exploitation of South China Sea

On July 25, 2017 local time, Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Foreign Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano of the Philippines answered questions at a joint press conference in Manila from journalists on the joint exploitation of the South China Sea by China and the Philippines.

Alan Peter Cayetano expressed that in order to achieve the development of Philippines-China relations, both sides must maintain the peaceful and stable situation, create a sound environment and benefit the two peoples through seeking the joint exploitation of natural resources. As early as 1986, Mr. Deng Xiaoping and then Vice President of the Philippines had already made decisions on the joint exploitation of the South China Sea by both countries. However, despite the discussion over the past 31 years, both sides have neither made breakthroughs nor taken substantial steps. It is believed that our generation, under the leadership of President Rodrigo Duterte and President Xi Jinping, has the wisdom to find out appropriate ways to jointly exploit natural resources, so as to benefit the two peoples.

Wang Yi said that I agree with Alan Peter Cayetano's opinion. If one party conducts unilateral exploitation in waters that have overlapping claims of maritime rights and interests between two parties, the other party will certainly take corresponding actions, which will complicate the maritime situation, and even escalate the tension, leading to no exploitation by either party. The solution is the conception with rich political wisdom offered by Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping to the Philippine leaders 31 years ago. Joint Exploitation does not influence or involve in respective legal systems, but to reach a standard and arrangement accepted by both sides through bilateral negotiation. China-Philippines relations have been constantly improved. It is necessary for both sides to make a decision at an early date, so as to make Mr. Deng Xiaoping's goodwill toward the Philippines over 30 years ago blossom and yield fruits today, and benefit the two peoples.

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