Journal of Social and Political


ISSN 2615-3718 (Online)

ISSN 2621-5675 (Print)

Published: 10 November 2018

Natural Resources as the Main Driver of Maritime Territorial Disputes in the Case of South China Sea Dispute - Case Studies on Scarborough Shoal and Spratly Islands

Haydar Maks

London School of Public Relations, Indonesia

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This paper assesses the extent of natural resources in playing a role in a maritime territorial dispute, employing South China Sea disputes as a case paper. Natural resources are considerably substantial to be a focal point since that this driver deals with national energy and food supply. China currently faces considerable social and economic challenges, which requires an abundant amount of food and energy supply to keep the wheel rolls in perpetuity. One of the means of hunting for additional resources is by soaking a territorial claim termed as Nine Dash Lines bending over the South China Sea and agitates other South Asian states' sovereign territories. This paper questions whether the historical claim issued by China towards Scarborough Shoal as well as huge natural resources resided in the Spratly Islands play a role in driving the storm upon this maritime territorial dispute. It is concluded that natural resources play a pivotal role in this on-going maritime territorial dispute since it is congenitally linked with the living sustainability of a state. The recommendation of resources-sharing is ultimately provided. It is indeed easy in theory, while the practical implementation may be difficult and would require high levels of trust, monitoring, and enforcement. Nevertheless, it is one of the feasible and more peaceful recommendation this paper tries to offer, rather encourage the states to engage in a war.


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