Date of Publication
Dispute Resolution and Arbitration
College of Law
Antonio Gabriel M. La Viña
Defense Panel Chair
Jack Andrew Miranda
Defense Panel Member
Brenda Jay Mendoza
Vyva Victoria Aguirre
The Arbitral Award of 12 July 2016 granted the Philippines exclusive rights over its EEZ in the West Philippine Sea, which initially had overlapping claims against China with its nine-dash-line. The UNCLOS, which was ratified by both China and the Philippines had served as the guidelines that the arbitral tribunal used to determine which country had a legitimate claim. The Philippines’ rights over its EEZ was purely in line with the principles of the UNCLOS, while China tried to hold on to their claim of historical rights which had no basis, and were replaced by the UNCLOS when China ratified to such.
With the award, the Philippines now has free reign over its EEZ which included the disputed Reed Bank where there is a plethora of natural resources. The Philippines comes with a new problem of how to take advantage of such resources and maintain the Philippine economy. As the most recent venture of the Philippines into natural resources, found in the Malampaya project, is almost depleted, the Philippines needs to begin another venture to maintain such flow of natural resources. This is where the join agreement with China comes in. The Philippine constitution requires that the Philippines maintain and support its territory, which included the EEZ. Having a joint development agreement, which China wishes to have with the Philippines, subverts this, as sovereign rights shall be given up to China in the process. With this, the alternative is to have a joint exploration agreement, which preserves the sovereign rights of the Philippines according to its Constitution, would seem to be the best option of the Philippines moving forward if any operations with China regarding the Reed Bank shall continue.
[viii], 114 leaves
Arbitration and award--Philippines; Arbitration (Administrative law)--Philippines; Arbitration agreements, Commercial--Philippines; Conflict of laws—Arbitration and award--Philippines; Malampalaya Project
Carandang, R. R., Biscocho, A. P., & Hiceta, A. (2019). The Philippine-China arbitral case: Implication of July 12, 2016 decision on the proposed exploration agreement in the Western Philippine Sea. Retrieved from https://animorepository.dlsu.edu.ph/etdm_law/23
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