The Taiwan Strait, International Crisis Group, Briefings and Reports.
– This International Crisis Group reports affirm that military conflict is not in the interests of either China or Taiwan and suggests demilitarizing and confidence-building measures be undertaken by both parties. The last few reports find that the outlook for stability across the Taiwan Strait has improved in recent years.
Tetley, William. The Chinese/US Incident at Hainan – A Confrontation of Super Powers and Civilizations. McGill University.
– “Five Questions: Firstly, did the United States Navy EP-3E aircraft have a right under international law to conduct information collecting in China’s 200-mile Exclusive Economic zone (“EEZ”)’? Secondly, even if illegal, is information collection a contribution towards world peace? Thirdly, what are the short-term consequences of the China/U.S. spy plane incident’? Fourthly, is it wise for the U.S. to continue to side with Taiwan in the confrontation between Taiwan and China, which confrontation is at the bottom of much of the controversy’? Lastly, should not the U.S strategic position towards China be revised, in particular the risky game of “who blinks first”, when it is well-known that since the Gulf War, the U.S. is reluctant to take on a land war outside its own borders and it is clear that one cannot precision bomb mainland China? It is also now clear that China did not “blink” and only after four weeks did it decide to return the spy plane, despite threats, veiled and otherwise.”
Thalang, Jeerawat Na and Vorapun Srivoranart. Kra Canal: centuries-old idea that refuses to die. Nation Multimedia Group.
-To dig or not to dig has long been a burning question surrounding the Kra Canal project. The debate surfaced again at a lively seminar focussing on the influence of the sea on the economy. The issue of whether or not the country should be cut in half by a canal appears to have as many supporters as opponents.
Thao, Nguyen Hong. The 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea: A Note. Ocean Development & International Law, 34:279–285, 2003.
– In November 2002 the ASEAN states and the People’s Republic of China agreed upon a Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea. This note, a follow-up to the author’s article, “Vietnam and the Code of Conduct for the South China Sea” (Ocean Development & International Law, Vol. 32, pp. 105-130 (2000)), briefly describes the contents and importance of the 2002 Declaration.
Thao, Nguyen Hong. Maritime Delimitation and Fishery Cooperation in the Tonkin Gulf. Ocean Development & International Law, 36:25–44, 2005.
– The Tonkin Gulf fisheries cooperation and maritime boundaries agreements signed by Vietnam and China in 2004 “end years of negotiation and debate regarding the rights of the respective states to the ocean areas and resources in the Gulf.”
Thia-Eng Chua, Coastal and Stella Regina Bernad, Eds. Coastal and Ocean Governance of the Seas of East Asia: Towards an Era of New Regional Cooperation and Partnerships, July 2003.
A pioneering PEMSEA effort to describe the geographical linkages of the five large marine ecosystems of East Asia (Yellow Sea, East China Sea, South China Sea, Sulu-Sulawesi Sea and Indonesian Seas). It calls on the coastal nations (D.P.R. Korea, Republic of Korea, Japan, P.R. China, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam) to create an institutional mechanism for coordinated action for sustainable ocean and coastal development, including financial implementation of local, national and regional action plans.
To, Lee Lai. China, the USA and the South China Sea Conflicts. Security Dialogue vol. 34, no. 1, March 2003.
“This article focuses on China’s strategy in dealing with the US factor in the South China Sea conflicts. While the USA is not directly involved in the South China Sea quagmire, its concern with the security of the sea-lanes and its insistence that peaceful means must be used to solve the region’s problems have cautioned China to tread carefully in its plans to recover its ‘lost territories’. China would like to see ASEAN and the individual ASEAN claimant states weanedoff their reliance on Washington. However, US surveillance and military power, particularly in the post-11 September period, play an important role in ensuring that disputes in the South China Sea do not escalate to unacceptable levels. It seems likely that the impasse in the discussions on the South China Sea will continue for some time.”
Tønnesson, Stein. Sino-Vietnamese Rapprochement and the South China Sea Irritant. Security Dialogue, Vol. 34, 55-70, 2003.
– This article describes the Sino-Vietnamese rapprochement in the 1990s, analyses the South China Sea ‘irritant’, presents the Gulf of Tonkin agreements and discusses the prospects for a Sino-Vietnamese initiative to resolve the South China Sea dispute. Keywords: Declaration on the Conduct of Parties, ASEAN, Paracels
Townsend-Gault, Ian. Legal and Political Perspectives on Sovereignty over the Spratly Islands. University of British Columbia, 1999
– “The purpose of this paper is to examine some of the implications of the dispute concerning sovereignty over the Spratly Islands often ignored by commentators as they pursue the most often debated topic in South China Sea studies, which is, of course, who has the best claim to some or all of the islands. Indeed, a slightly facetious version of the sub-text of these remarks would be «does it matter who owns the Spratlys?»
Trono, Romeo B. and Jose Alfred B. Cantos. Conserving Migratory Species Through Ecoregion Conservation Approach: The Case of Sea Turtles in Sulu-Sulawesi Marine Ecoregion, December 2002.
– “The tri-national sea turtle conservation program is envisioned to effectively conserve the largest green and hawksbill turtle populations and their habitats in the Southeast Asian region.” Project report from the World Wildlife Fund for Nature.
United Nations Environmental Program. Reversing Environmental Degradation Trends in the South China Sea and Gulf of Thailand. September 2003.
– Official report of the First Meeting of the Regional Task Force on Legal Matters. Keywords: ASEAN, mangroves, swamp grass.
United States Energy Information Administration, World Oil Transit Chokepoints.
– Background information on seven strategic chokepoints for oil tankers: Suez, Hormuz, Panama, Malacca, Bab-al-Mandab, Bosporus, Danish Straits
Valencia, Mark J., A Code of Conduct for the South China Sea: What Should It Contain? Nautilus Institute, December 8, 2011.
- “Two provisions…are probably critical to the CoC’s effectiveness. The first is an agreement to be bound by the Code and to develop a mechanism to explore alleged violations thereof….The second is to encourage “outside” parties to adhere and accede to the CoC. A Secretariat—or a special office in the ASEAN Secretariat—might be helpful in implementing and publicizing the Code. Dispute settlement should be compulsory and might be referred to the existing 1976 Bali Treaty on Amity and Cooperation dispute settlement mechanism, the International Court of Justice, or the Tribunal for the Law of the Sea.
Valencia, Mark J. Conclusions and the way forward. Marine Policy Volume 29, Issue 2 , March 2005, Pages 185-187.
– Military and intelligence gathering activities in the EEZs will likely become more intensive and intrusive. They will also become more controversial because there is disagreement regarding the regime governing such activities in the EEZ. Dialogue leading to agreed voluntary guidelines for these activities must continue.”
Valencia, Mark J. Introduction: military and intelligence gathering activities in the exclusive economic zones: consensus and disagreement II. Marine Policy Volume 29, Issue 2 , March 2005, Pages 97-99.
– “Maritime issues have risen to the forefront of current security concerns. In particular, military and intelligence gathering activities in foreign exclusive economic zones (EEZ) remain controversial. Exacerbating factors include advancing military and intelligence technology, a growing dialectic between coastal States and maritime powers, and new threats like terrorism and weapons of mass destruction. The Honolulu Meeting was part of a Dialogue series on these issues.” Topics covered in this special issue on “Military and Intelligence Gathering Activities in the Exclusive Economic Zone: Consensus and Disagreement” include a summary of the Tokyo Meeting; recent incidents and developments; different perspectives; the proliferation security initiative; implications for the EEZ regime; key terms: range of interpretation; hydrographic surveys and scientific research: differences, overlaps and implications; draft guidelines for military and intelligence gathering in the EEZ; means and manner of implementation and enforcement of any agreed rules; and conclusions and the way forward.
Valencia, Mark J. In Response to Robert Beckman. RSIS Commentaries;June 4, 2007.
– A response to what the author considers the overly optimistic views of Beckman’s article, “Joint Development in the South China Sea, Time for ASEAN and China to Promote Cooperation?“
Valencia, Mark J. “Regional Maritime Marine Building: Prospects in Northeast and Southeast Asia” Ocean Development and International Law, Volume 33, Issue 3, 2000, pp. 223-247.
– “The primacy of dis-integrative factors argues strongly for an ad hoc, issue-specific, evolutionary process for multilateral maritime regime building in Asia.”
Valencia, Mark J and Kazumine Akimoto. Report of the Tokyo meeting and progress to date. Marine Policy Volume 29, Issue 2 , March 2005, Pages 101-106.
– “Military and intelligence gathering activities will likely become more intensive, intrusive, controversial and dangerous. Regarding the regime covering these activities, there is general agreement that the exercise of the freedom of navigation and overflight in and above Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs) should not interfere with the rights of the coastal State in the EEZ. But there is disagreement regarding interpretations of relevant 1982 UNCLOS provisions, the means to resolve the disagreements, or if there is even a need to do so. Increased dialogue between maritime powers and coastal States is necessary to reach a mutual understanding of key terms with a goal of developing some agreed voluntary guidelines for such activities and the means and manner of implementing them.”
Valencia, Mark J. and Yoshihisa Amae. Regime Building in the East China Sea. Ocean Development & International Law, Vol. 34, 2003, 189–208.
– “China and Japan have led the way in developing a “conflict avoidance” regime for the East China Sea where the two have extensive overlapping claims. The current regime includes a joint regulation and fishing zone and a prior notification regime for scientific research. The next step should be a regime regarding the use of force and military and intelligence-gathering activities in the EEZ. This article reviews the progress made in building this conflict avoidance regime and examines the need for and ways to expand it to cover military activities in the EEZ.”
Van Dyke, Jon M. The disappearing right to navigational freedom in the exclusive economic zone. Marine Policy Volume 29, Issue 2 , March 2005, Pages 107-121.
– “Navigational freedoms have been a central part of the law of the sea for hundreds of years, but significant restrictions have been imposed recently upon these freedoms. Fishing vessels are subject to the most restraints and, to protect their fish catch, must now give notice whenever they travel through the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of another country. Oil tankers, especially those with single hulls are also subject to a variety of restraints, and any ship with a dangerous cargo must conform to international, regional, and national regulations. Ships carrying ultrahazardous nuclear cargoes have been told by many countries to avoid their EEZs, and these ships have in fact picked routes designed to avoid most EEZs. Security concerns have increased dramatically during the past 2 years, and it has become almost commonplace for the major maritime and military powers to assert the right to stop and board merchant vessels to look for suspect cargoes in all parts of the oceans. Even military vessels, which have immunity from seizure, must nonetheless respect the many rules that have been established to protect the marine environment and the security of coastal populations. A new norm of customary international law appears to have emerged that allows coastal states to regulate navigation through their EEZ based on the nature of the ship and its cargo.”
von Hoesslin, Karsten, A View of the South China Sea – From Within: Report on the Joint Oceanographic Marine Scientific Research Expedition (III) in the South China Sea, Culture Mandala, Vol. 7 no. 1, December 2005.
– The author, a research associate with the Center for Military & Strategic Studies, University of Calgary, documents the 3rd Joint Oceanographic Marine Scientific Research Expedition to the South China Sea (JOMSRE-SCS III) on board the survey vessel BRP Hydrographer Presbitero. The trip took twenty-seven Filipino and Vietnamese marine research scientists from the Philippine port at Subic across the South China Sea and arrived twelve days later in Nha Trang, Vietnam.
Weeks, Stanley B., Sea Lines of Communication (SLOC) Security and Access, University of California, Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation; Feb, 1998.
– “Security and access to sea lines of communication (SLOCs) is of increasing importance, as these sea lines are the maritime highways for vast trade flows critical to the rapidly growing prosperity not only of the Northeast Asia region, but also for the entire Asia-Pacific. Threats to the security and access to SLOCs include both military concerns (conflicts between regional countries as well as sea mines) and non-military concerns (natural disasters and accidents, piracy, and particularly “creeping jurisdiction” of regional states). The United States, with both trade and security interests in East Asian SLOCs, has three times in the past 18 months reemphasized its commitment to uphold the traditional principles of freedom of navigation in regional SLOCsa commitment which logically should be shared by the other East Asian states.”
Young, Adam J. and Mark J. Valencia. Conflation of piracy and terrorism in Southeast Asia: Rectitude and utility. Contemporary Southeast Asia. Singapore: Aug 2003. Vol. 25, Iss. 2; pg.269.
– “Since 11 September 2001, the conflation of “piracy” and “terrorism” in Southeast Asia has become common in the mass media and government policy statements. The root causes and factors which enable piracy and terrorism are indeed similar, and the perpetrators’ tactics overlap at the high end of piracy, i.e., ship seizure and hostage taking. However, the objectives of pirates and terrorists are different, and solutions should be fitted to the particular problem. Responses include self-help and foreign naval assistance. But patrols or pursuits by foreign navies in Southeast Asian waters would raise sovereignty concerns. Thus foreign assistance in the building of indigenous maritime enforcement capacity appears to be a more viable long-term solution.”
Yu, Yunjun and Yongtong Mu. The new institutional arrangements for fisheries management in Beibu Gulf. Marine Policy, Volume 30, Issue 3, May 2006, Pages 249–260.
– “China and Vietnam have recently signed two bilateral agreements to deal with maritime issues in Beibu Gulf. One is the maritime boundary delimitation agreement, and the other the fisheries agreement. The two parties have also formulated a supplementary protocol to the latter agreement. All of them have entered into force on 30 June 2004. This article introduces the new arrangements for fisheries management initiated by the two countries, focusing especially on the Joint Fishery Committee established by the two parties, the contracting waters covered by the fisheries agreement, and the conservation and management measures for the Gulf’s fisheries. The challenges likely confronted by China after this institutional change takes place are analyzed. A brief comparison is drawn among the three effectual fisheries agreements signed by China, respectively, with Japan, South Korea and Vietnam. Finally, as for the future of fisheries management in the Gulf some recommendations are made.”
Zubir, Mokhzani; Basiron, Mohd Nizam — “The Strait of Malacca: the Rise of China, America’s Intentions and the Dilemma of the Littoral States”  MarStudies 8; (2005) 141 Maritime Studies 24 .
– Malaysia and other littoral states must continually find ways to balance pressure from the US to increase security in the straits leading to the South China Sea and pressure from China to allow the unobstructed passage of its oil tankers. “So far the littoral States have managed to curtail the enthusiasm of the US to contribute ‘actively’ to ensuring maritime security in the Strait of Malacca. This does not come cheap though, and the price is more presence of the maritime forces of the littoral States in the area. Already joint patrols have been inaugurated and executed. The big question is whether these patrols can be sustained. The failure to do so would again bring about the pressure from the US and its allies to demand that they also be given the right to patrol the Strait of Malacca. Much therefore depends on the wisdom of Malaysia and the other littoral States in balancing the interest of the world’s only superpower and a powerful neighbour.”
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Valencia, Mark J. Conclusions and the way forward. Marine Policy Volume 29, Issue 2 , March 2005, Pages 185-187.
- “Military and intelligence gathering activities in the EEZs will likely become more intensive and intrusive. They will also become more controversial because there is disagreement regarding the regime governing such activities in the EEZ. Dialogue leading to agreed voluntary guidelines for these activities must continue.”