TheJakartaPost

Please Update your browser

Your browser is out of date, and may not be compatible with our website. A list of the most popular web browsers can be found below.
Just click on the icons to get to the download page.

Jakarta Post

Indonesia and the South China Sea dispute

  • Ristian Atriandi Supriyanto

Singapore   /   Mon, July 4 2011   /  08:00 am

In a Foreign Affairs article last year, Robert Kaplan wrote that notwithstanding its continental being, China would eventually expand seaward as a consequence of growing overseas commercial interests and soaring demands for energy imports. It is too early to tell whether China’s seaward turn will create instability in the maritime domain. But one must comprehend the fact that the shift is inevitable.

The recent incidents and tension in the South China Sea (SCS) are but only symptoms of China’s growing maritime assertiveness. The US Energy Information Administration reports that Chinese sources estimated the area to hold as high as 213 billion barrels of oil and 2 quadrillion cubic feet of natural gas reserves. Not to mention its significance for fisheries and international navigation. Given these factors, the tension stemming from the dispute seems natural. It is, however, ev...