• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Chinese Warning to India: The Latest Sign of China's Disturbing Ambitions

    The stage is set for significantly heightened tensions along China’s southern coast. China recently warned that Indian companies should not engage in oil exploration in Vietnamese waters claimed by China, and India rebuffed China’s implicit claim that those waters are Chinese territories.

    The Chinese message referred to portions of the South China Sea that are in dispute between China and Vietnam, with a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson stating, “Our consistent position is that we are opposed to any country engaging in oil and gas exploration and development activities in waters under China’s jurisdiction.”

    While many of the disputes in the region refer to the Paracel and Spratly islands (both of which are much farther to the east), China has argued that virtually the entire South China Sea—in some official presentations extending even into Indonesian waters—are in fact Chinese territory. The latest Chinese action is in support of this very expansive view.

    The Indian company ONGC Videsh (a subsidiary of an Indian state-owned oil and gas company) is not the first multinational company to be warned by the Chinese about Vietnamese-sanctioned commercial operations off the Vietnamese coast. BP and ExxonMobil are perhaps the most famous targets of China’s ire in this regard. What makes the incident with India particularly worrisome is that it follows directly on the heels of an incident off the same coast reportedly involving an Indian naval vessel. When the Indian amphibious warship INS Airavat was departing Nha Trang for Haiphong in late July—and still in Vietnam’s exclusive economic zone—it was reportedly contacted on an open radio channel by a caller claiming to be the “Chinese navy.” The caller stated that the Indian vessel was entering Chinese waters and demanded that it identify itself and state its purpose.

    Although India eventually issued a statement defending its maritime rights, all the parties (China, India, and Vietnam) have sought to downplay the July incident. This new Chinese declaration, however, would suggest that there is a move afoot in Beijing to firmly assert its claims against all comers. The South China Sea is likely to become tenser in the coming months.

    Posted in International [slideshow_deploy]

    5 Responses to Chinese Warning to India: The Latest Sign of China's Disturbing Ambitions

    1. Luz E Rivera says:

      China is running a big risk with Al Qaida, terrorist attacks in oil under the waters, like happened in the Golf of Mexico if they reclaim excess of territory rights, every time they will try to find oil, something very rare and orchestrated will happen to them, like happened in the Golf of Mexico.

    2. @DANEgerus says:

      China threatens drilling off of Vietnam's coast as they drill in "Cuban" waters off of America's coast where American's are banned from drilling by Obama.

    3. James says:

      India is trying to bring the Vietnam up to against China. Well, let do it, and who will be a loser. It's interesting to see what will happen between the two power countries.

    4. Y Bhatt says:

      China is flexing its muscles. With the exception of Pakistan and possibly North Korea, China is the most disliked country in Asia. Its Human Rights is a disgrace. Yes, it has made progress in the last 30 years but many Chinese are still not happy because there is no democracy. America wants a prosperous China but America/South East Asia, Japan, South Korea, India does not want a powerful China because no one knows how China will react.

    5. Tony says:

      How come Chinese can oppose India's joint venture with Vietnam. India is not opposing any of China's joint venture activities in Africa and other countries.

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.

    ×