The dispute over the sovereignty of the Reed Bank, also known locally as the Recto Bank, has been going on for years.
This is with regards to the claim of China that the Reed Bank is a part of their territory.
Foreign Affairs spokesman Charles Jose said today, “Recto Bank or Reed Bank is not an island, rock or low tide elevation. Accordingly, Reed Bank which is about 85 nautical miles from the nearest coast of Palawan and 595 nautical miles from the coast of Hainan forms part of the 200 nautical mile continental shelf of the Philippine archipelago under UNCLOS.”
“In accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, the Philippines has the exclusive sovereign rights over the Reed bank.”
“No other state is lawfully entitled to assert sovereignty or sovereign rights over the said area,” Jose said.
China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei recently issued a statement saying that the oil exploration project in the Reed bank is illegal.
The Department of Energy extended the contract of the British firm Forum Energy until August 2016 to complete the second sub-phased drilling in the Reed Bank.