South China Sea Dispute: China’s Role and Proposed Solutions

Mubeen Adnan, Fakhara Shahid
Content Type
Journal Article
Journal of Political Studies
Issue Number
Publication Date
Summer 2020
Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
South China Sea (SCS) is a part of Pacific Ocean and is the most strategic and important waterway in the world containing large deposits of hydrocarbons and fossil oil. Due to its unquestioned importance it has become bone of contention among many East Asian nations and China regarding its sovereignty and control of the territory. Two Islands Parcel and Spratly in the SCS are the flashpoints of the dispute because countries like, Philippine, China, Vietnam, Brunei and Malaysia are claiming their rights over some parts or sovereignty over all the above mentioned Islands. Primary concern of the dispute lies in U shaped nine- dashed demarcation line by China in the SCS. A decision of international court of Arbitration in “Philippines v. china arbitration case” showed that China U-shaped nine dash line demarcation is uneven with UNCLOS 1982. This verdict has been rejected by China on the grounds that it has no binding forces because China controls 90% area of the SCS through nine dashed line by having historical claim of the sea and this line was drawn in 1946 by the help of USA prior to the 1982 UNCLOS. China wants to solve the dispute bilaterally without any third party interference while due to the importance of the region many other actors are getting involved in to the dispute. A permanent and lasting solution of the dispute is a dire need of the time to solve the complex issue.
Foreign Policy, International Law, Territorial Disputes
Political Geography
China, Asia-Pacific, South China Sea