China - Southeast Asia

Chronology from May 2013 to Aug 2013

:   China and ASEAN foreign ministers meet in Beijing and agree to strengthen their economic relations and upgrade their trade area.  The ministers agree to facilitate economic integration through more efficient interconnection of sea, land, and air networks in the region.

: China requests Philippine President Aquino cancel his visit to the Sept. 3 Nanning Trade Expo and reschedule it for a “more conducive time.”

: Myanmar’s Parliament approves $100 million of the $600 million China has offered in loans.

: First China-Thailand Strategic Dialogue is held in Bangkok.

:   Southeast Asian foreign ministers meet in Hua Hin, Thailand and agree in an informal session on a common position regarding a Code of Conduct for the South China Sea.

: Philippine Justice Department announces that they recommended homicide charges against eight Filipino coastguards for the fatal shooting of a Taiwanese fisherman in disputed waters on May 9. Taiwan welcomes the move as a “constructive response.”

:   In a meeting in Hanoi, Foreign Minister Wang announces that the envisaged Code of Conduct in the South China Sea is an important development in ASEAN-China relations but cautions that such an agreement should not be rushed and should be implemented gradually on a consensus basis.

: Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi attends China-ASEAN forum and visits Malaysia, Laos, and Vietnam.

: The natural gas portion of the Myanmar-China Oil and Gas Pipeline begins transporting gas to China.

: Philippine Foreign Ministry spokesperson denounces China’s reported decision to arm coast guard vessels to patrol the South China Sea.

:   Senior officials of the Communist Party of China and the Communist Party of Vietnam meet in Beijing and pledge to enhance communication and high-level exchanges.

:   Fan Changlong, vice chair of the Central Military Commission, arrives in Nay Pyi Daw for an official visit and meets Myanmar President Thein Sein and other senior military officials to discuss the continued cooperation and exchanges between the two armed forces.

: Chinese spokesperson responds to Philippine charges of July 15.

: Philippine Foreign Ministry spokesperson issues a detailed response to the Chinese spokesperson’s charges of July 12.

: Planned demonstration in Manila causes Chinese Embassy to close its visa office.

: China’s largest search and rescue vessel Haixun 01 arrives in Jakarta for a port visit and Chinese and Indonesian officials exchange views on future collaboration on joint search and rescue exercises on the high seas.

: Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson rebuffs Philippine foreign minister’s charges.

: UN tribunal hearing the Philippines’ case against Chinese claims in the South China Sea is convened in The Hague, Netherlands.

: Philippine foreign minister attacks China in a speech in Belgium.

: Sharply worded Xinhua commentary criticizes Philippine foreign minister’s remarks to the media and challenge to Chinese Foreign Minister Wang during China-ASEAN and ASEAN Regional Forum meetings in Brunei and accuses the US and Japan of establishing closer ties with the Philippines military in this period of tension in Sino-Philippines relations.

:   Chinese and ASEAN foreign ministers announce that they will hold a detailed discussion during the Sixth Senior Officials Meeting in September on the implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea and work toward establishing a formal Code of Conduct.

: Overseas edition of People’s Daily warns Manila of a Chinese “counterstrike” if it continues to provoke Beijing in the South China Sea.

:   China and Indonesia sign an anti-graft cooperation memo at conclusion of the fifth seminar of the International Association of Anti-Corruption Authorities. Both sides agree to exchange information, share best practices on handling corruption and money-laundering cases, and carry out capacity-building programs for investigation and prosecutorial skills.

:   Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi visits Nay Pyi Daw and meets Vice President Nyan Tun. They reaffirm ties and agree to expand trade, economic, and business activities and cooperation on poverty alleviation programs and agricultural development.

: Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson condemns the Philippines continued “illegal occupation” of the disputed Ren’ai reef.

: Philippine defense minister says the Philippines deployed a new contingent of marines and new supplies to Second Thomas Shoal – an operation that was not obstructed by Chinese Navy and civilian surveillance ships in the area.

:   Representatives from ASEAN and China meet in Vietnam for a workshop to strengthen search and rescue coordination in the South China Sea.

: Vietnam’s President Truong Tan Sang visits China and meets President Xi Jinping. They agree to establish a maritime hotline to handle fishing disputes in the South China Sea, to implement the DoC, and to hold two joint patrols of the Beibu Gulf later this year.

: Philippines National Bureau of Investigation announces it will pursue criminal charges against Philippine Coast Guard members for the May 9 death of a Taiwanese fisherman.

: Philippine government protests to the Chinese Embassy about publication of a Chinese map in January with claims to the South China Sea that are strongly opposed by Manila.

: China and Laos agree to deepen bilateral cooperation and expand their comprehensive strategic partnership during a meeting in Beijing between Liu Yunshan, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Chinese Communist Party (CPC), and Pany Yathotou, president of the Laotian National Assembly.

: Chinese Foreign Ministry and Defense Ministry spokespersons join the Chinese ambassador in Manila in condemning the Philippines for grounding an old warship on Second Thomas Shoal in 1999 and continuing to deploy a small contingent of marines there.

: ASEAN and China hold eighth joint meeting on the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DoC). They agree to implement the declaration and develop maritime emergency measures.

:   PLAN carries out a joint naval exercise in the South China Sea that includes warships, submarines, and the naval air force from North Sea, East Sea, and South Sea fleets.

: Taipei announces that the Taiwan Coast Guard will protect Taiwanese fishing boats them from “harassment by the Philippines.”

:   Cambodia, China, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime sign a memorandum to deepen regional and international cooperation on illicit drug trafficking in the Golden Triangle and the greater Mekong region.

: Local Philippine official tells the media that a civilian boat was chased by a Chinese warship as the boat passed near Second Thomas Shoal.

:   Senior commander of the PLA Navy (PLAN) South China Sea Fleet attends the International Maritime Defense Exhibition and Conference in Singapore and calls for increased exchange of information and cooperation on maritime security, including joint patrol operations to counter piracy activities and drug trafficking on the high seas.

: Philippines issues an apology to Taiwan regarding the May 9 fishing boat incident. Taiwan rejects the apology as insincere and implements new sanctions against the Philippines, including a tourist “red alert” and suspension of all Philippine laborer applications.

:   China and Vietnam convene the sixth meeting of the bilateral Cooperation Steering Committee.  Topics include expanding trade and economic cooperation, people-to-people exchanges, and increasing coordination and communication on the South China Sea.

: Philippines files a protest with the Chinese Embassy in Manila against China’s “provocative and illegal” deployment of a Chinese Navy ship and Maritime Surveillance ships near Second Thomas Shoal.

:   Cambodia’s National Assembly ratifies a maritime transportation agreement between ASEAN and China that will expand cooperation on passenger and cargo transport. All ASEAN member states except for Indonesia have ratified the agreement.

: Philippine Coast Guard fires on one of four Taiwanese fishing vessels that it claims entered its territorial waters, killing a fisherman. Taiwan demands a formal investigation, apology, compensation, and punishment for those responsible within 72 hours.

: ASEAN-China Consultative Meeting takes place in Brunei on the sidelines of the Seventh ASEAN Defense Ministers Meeting.  Chinese Defense Minister Chang Wanquan attends the meetings and discusses expanding ASEAN-China cooperation in the areas of military exchanges, personnel training, and joint exercises.

:   Foreign Minister Wang Yi arrives in Jakarta and meets Indonesian counterpart Marty Natalagewa. They agree to maintain high-level exchanges, expand bilateral trade and investment, and strengthen maritime cooperation.

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