Japan eyes maritime aid for Philippine defense


Map showing the disputed areas in the West Philippine Sea (south China Sea), including the Spratlys Islands and Scarborough Shoal. AFP

MANILA, Philippines – Japan is planning to provide maritime vessels, including 1,000-ton patrol ships, to the Philippines to “support the island country in its territorial dispute against China,” a Japanese newspaper reported in March, weeks before tensions erupted over the Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal.

The Philippine Navy said it welcomed any form of assistance from any nation but could not confirm whether Japan had made such a commitment to the Philippine government.

In a March 22 report carried by KBS World Radio, a Korean English-language news website, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun, a Japanese-language newspaper, was quoted as saying that Japan “has decided to provide the

Philippines with patrol ships” by year’s end.

“The newspaper said that Japan has decided to provide vessels, including 1,000-ton patrol ships, to the Philippines by the end of the year,” KBS World Radio said.

Not official yet

But the Japanese Embassy here Thursday said Japan “has not yet officially decided” if it would provide the Philippines with the maritime patrol vessels.

“The government of Japan is still considering whether to include them under its official development aid” to the Philippines, the embassy’s information and press center told the Inquirer.

KBS World Radio said the move to supply the Philippines with patrol vessels came after the government last year eased the “Three Principles of Arms Export,” a law which proscribes Japanese export of arms.

It quoted the Japanese paper as saying “this is a move to raise the Philippines’ maritime safety capabilities in the South China Sea, where it is clashing with China over sovereignty rights.”

“The United States and members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations are said to be keeping China in check as part of their efforts to maintain maritime security, which Japan also supports,” KBS World Radio said.

Added boost

Navy spokesperson Lt. Col. Omar Tonsay said the Navy would appreciate the added boost to its capability, considering recent circumstances, but he said he could not confirm whether such plans were really in place.

Armed Forces public affairs chief Col. Arnulfo Marcelo Burgos said the military was not part of the discussions, but that information reaching him indicated that the ships in discussion would be smaller than the reported 1,000-ton vessels.

Meanwhile, Armed Forces Chief Lt. Gen. Jessie Dellosa Thursday said the process of building “a credible defense” for the

Philippines was moving fast, with a new warship arriving on May 22, as well as eight new combat helicopters and radar facilities.

During a visit to Puerto Princesa City in Palawan Thursday, Dellosa said the purchase of new hardware would help the armed forces build a “modest deterrent capability.”

The AFP chief met with Western Command  Commander Juancho Sabban and key officers to assess the situation at the disputed Panatag Shoal just 200 kilometers off Masinloc in Zambales province.

On April 10, tensions rose between China and the Philippines over disputed fishing grounds in Panatag, known as Scarborough internationally and as Huangyan island to the Chinese.

2nd ship from US

Dellosa said the government would “formally receive” its second Hamilton-class naval vessel from the United States on May 22. The first such acquisition, the BRP Gregorio del Pilar, figured in the early part of the Scarborough standoff with Chinese vessels when its crew tried to arrest a group of Chinese poachers caught red-handed inside the disputed shoal. With Jerry E. Esplanada

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  • Paul_Fivens

    get rid of the U.S. lets invite the  Japanese.

    • Bo_XiLai

      US get out. Japen is the friend to Phil. Japan is also friend to China. US get out!

  • Joseph

    next.. we need some extra ASW muscle capabilities..may mga KILO at ALFA class sub na nagkalat sa west phils sea.. 

  • gregandymar

    Japanese people have changed tremendously after world war 2. They are so disciplined and dedicated people. Despite of major natural calamities that have struck them last year, they remain strong and determined. This gesture that they will provide us patrol ships is truly welcome, and it shows of their belief that our country is now determined to fight corruption especially by our very own political leaders. Somehow it can help us deter some threats in our West Philippine Sea.

    • Oliver

      I have to say that I am amazed at the Japanese citizens themselves for their good qualities that you have mentioned. Politeness is something that is deeply ingrained into their culture, and this is very admirable.

      It is time to stand up to China.

      As usual the Smurfs (United Nations) are incredibly slow to help clarify the legitimacy of our territory.

      We should not give into fear against these bullies. To paraphrase President Reagan, we should show them that there is a line that we are prepared to defend and that they will never be allowed to cross. There are real consequences and a high price to pay for their belligerent actions.

      • Andrew Pc

        A bit confused by your statement saying UN is increadibly slow to help clarify the legitimacy of ……
        Apparently you are another  vicitm of Mr. Aquino’s confusing flip-flop antics, Philippine never submit anything to UN in the first place…where come the slow ?
        Yes, Philippine did hyped up the intention of submitting her case under ITLOS / UNCLOS, saying this is the only sure way of getting what she wanted, but alas the ever-confusing Mr. Aquino said a few days back that it is a no go…..anyway, you are not the only one here who still talking about ITLOS/UNCLOS, refusing to believe that Mr. Aquino made that “U” or some may be harbouring the hope that he might just make another “U” turn again…..Oh my, i am confused now, too many ‘U” turn.

  • John

    Dont you know that you cannot open Youtube in China, felt pity on those good Chinese citizen they are so exploited by their govt.One of the worst medical support in the world is in China, an ordinary chinese will not be accepted in any hospital unless they pay, many of them just die outside the hospital premises. But good for foreigners they will be admitted to any hospital even without paying.

    • john clark

      DId you know if you are a main land national of China you CANNOT IMMIGRATE to Hong Kong?

      People themselves where promised they can go and live in hong kong after 75 YEARS! It seems they are afraid of locals overwhelming that part of China!

  • keijhae


  • Andrew Pc

    One has to admit that this is a smart move by the Japanese. China can and should learn this one from these Japanese.
    Great move.

  • rodulio

    This is not just a smart move by the Japanese. This is a result of a joint strategic alliance with the U.S. After listening to the Commander of the Pacific Rim Commander Locklear last week, it is very clear that China and PurpleDaisy13 the dog and that their days are numbered. 

    The U.S. shift of war from Afghanistan to the South China Sea shows the U.S. continuing development of bi-lateral relations with Japan, Australia and now renewing commitments to the Philippines. The speech denotes strategic, events that we can expect to see in the future…..

    It is going to be great for he Philippines because China and PurpleDaisy13 will be contained like a dog….


    After listening to that, whew, man that is a big statement….

    Too bad for the dogss……

    here doggie, doggie

    Forget the ITLOS and UNCLOS, this is even bigger and it is happening in the background….


    • Andrew Pc

      This strategic alliance is well expected by China, or any other would-be challenger (or atleast perceived to be so) to the States, The States will always try to contain anyone that is capable of competiting with her,refuses to be a subservient and obedient sidekick. Indeed, China should be very proud (no doubt, of course annoyed at the same time) of the fact that the States is taking her as a worthy opponent and not otherwise.

      Anymore ” inside info” of yours ?

    • Andrew Pc

      By the way, ponder this if you may :

      Hope that something good come out of one’ effort – is for the achiever
      Hope that something bad happen to your opponent – is for the loser

  • mastergod006

    Why these neighboring countries all of them are self-deceiving?
    Thought that other people’s things away from their near and has been said in the use of their own home. . .
    Get rid of a powerful but friendly neighbors, and usher in a had invaded the enslavement of their own barbaric thugs of his own happiness tomorrow. . .
    God’s the same logic

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