MANILA — The Philippine government will continue its discussions with China regarding claims and concerns on the Malampaya gas fields, President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. has said.
During the question and answer at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, DC on Thursday (Washington time), Marcos said China continues to claim areas of the gas fields.
Malampaya is located in the West Philippine Sea, about 65 kilometers offshore from Palawan.
“The only way to resolve the issues that are outstanding is to once again keep talking and to come to a consensus to come to an agreement, and to continue to negotiate," Marcos said.
"It is not an easy process. But the Malampaya fields are the natural gas fields that lie in our, within our baselines and within our exclusive economic zone, and that again is being questioned in certain cases, in certain areas, by China. And we continue to negotiate with them,” he added.
The Philippines will "continue to find a way" to further address the problems between the two countries regarding the gas fields, said Marcos, adding that they were “slowly inching towards a resolution."
“What happens now, especially when it comes to exploration in --- for energy --- for our energy needs are which law will apply, because we say this is part of Philippine territory and therefore Philippine law should apply,” he said.
“It may have to come down to a compromise that will just limit that application, the application of laws maybe to the vessels that are involved in this exploration and exploitation of whatever natural gas fields we can access."
Malamapaya supplies natural gas to five power plants in Luzon, with a combined capacity of 3,200 megawatts. Its service contract is set to expire in 2024.
Prime Infrastructure Capital Inc, which acquired a controlling stake over Malampaya, in February said the gas project operator had generated revenues for the government amounting to over P1 trillion.
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