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Nien-Tsu Alfred Hu, "South China Sea: Troubled Waters or a Sea of Opportunity?", Ocean Development & International Law, Vol. 41:3, pp. 203-213


South China Sea: Troubled Waters or a Sea of Opportunity?




As a semi-enclosed sea, the South China Sea is the location of conflicts and disputes arisen from intra-regional claims by bordering States over various insular features and the surrounding waters and from extra-regional interests projected in the region.


Regional cooperation is an approach called for by the 1982 United Nations onvention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) to address potential conflicts and disputes in semi-enclosed seas. The submissions to the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) by two bordering States and the improved cross-Strait relations between Taiwan and China are two recent developments that have implications for stability and cooperation in the region. This article provides a background to these developments and highlights the assessments on the situation and prospects of the South China Sea presented by articles in this and the next Special Issue.


Keywords: disputes, regional cooperation, South China Sea



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