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China ‘not threatening war’ vs PH; ‘we’re almost there’ — Locsin

/ 10:36 AM October 29, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — China is not threatening war against the Philippines; “we’re almost there,” Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. said Tuesday.

In a Twitter post, the foreign affairs chief said that the oil and gas deal between the two nations “spares either from conceding sovereign claims.”

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The country’s top diplomat said this after a Twitter user claimed that China “is threatening war to prevent the Philippines [from] developing its own resources.”

The Twitter user was responding to Locsin’s earlier post where he said China was the only one offering help to develop the Philippines’ oil and gas resources.

READ: Locsin: ‘China doesn’t need our oil and gas; we do’

The same Twitter user, however, argued that “Shell and Chevron are already doing it.”

Responding to this, Locsin said: “Shell and Chevron’s Malampaya is running out.”

In 2001, a consortium led by Shell Philippines Exploration B.V. (SPEX) with joint venture partners Chevron Malampaya LLC and Philippine National Oil Company Exploration Corp. (PNOC-EC) started commercial production of natural gas from the Malampaya natural gas field.

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READ: Extension of Malampaya group’s license sought

“No it (China) is not threatening war; we’re almost there,” the foreign affairs chief went on.

He said that China “sees no problem doing it explicitly under Philippine law” when it comes to undisputed areas covered by the PH-China joint oil and gas exploration agreement.

“In disputed areas under my MOU (memorandum of understanding) on Oil & Gas which spares either from conceding sovereign claims,” Locsin further said.

During President Rodrigo Duterte’s fifth visit to China in August, the Philippines and China agreed to form groups that would finalize the possible agreements on the joint oil and gas exploration in specific areas in the West Philippine Sea.

The two countries have also agreed on the terms of reference for the possible joint exploration pact.

READ: Locsin: PH-China oil and gas exploration deal won’t ‘set aside’ arbitral ruling

Locsin had earlier said that under the joint oil and gas exploration memorandum of agreement, “no legal position of either side is compromised when you enter into this agreement.” /je

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TAGS: China, Global Nation, oil and gas, Philippines, Teodoro Locsin Jr.
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