Supreme Court (SC) Justice Antonio Carpio warned that the Philippines could lose 130 billion barrels of oil and gas if it gives up its claim in the disputed portions of South China Sea.
Aside from the oil and gas deposits in the contested region, the country could also lose territories three times the size of Quezon City if President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration stops asserting its sovereignty and sovereign rights, according to the SC justice.
According to GMA News, Justice Carpio believes that China wants to control the entire South China Sea for economic and military purposes. Citing several studies, Carpio said an estimated 130 billion barrels of oil can be extracted from the South China Sea.
The oil deposit in the disputed region is reportedly equal to oil deposits of Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates. The methane hydrate found in the South China Sea could power China for a hundred years, according to the said studies.
“What is the grand design of China? China wants to control for economic and military purposes the South China Sea. China wants all the oil, gas, and fishery,” Carpio said; adding “China is taking already 50 percent of the annual fish catch in the South China Sea to feed 1.4 billion people.”
The Philippines is also losing territories three times the size of Quezon City, the largest city in Metro Manila, by not filing a protest with the United Nations or China itself. He said international law said the failure to protest the encroachment in of a territory is equivalent to giving it up.