FAR EAST CORRESPONDENT — China has imposed its annual ban on commercial fishing in the South China Sea, but its efforts to preserve and replenish fish stocks have been met with skepticism. Hanoi is particularly irritated, while Manila is biting its tongue, believing the move is simply another form of Chinese bullying.
Vietnam says the ban, from May 16 to August 1, is “invalid”. The Philippines responded with its own ban, allowing a face saving reduction in tensions amid the month-long stand-off with China over Scarborough Shoal.
Neither believe China is genuinely acting in the best interests of food security, and they suspect its ulterior motive is simply to assert itself over the Spratly and Paracel islands, which has increasingly become a regional flashpoint. Read more in The Diplomat.