|U.S. President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama greet the Philippines' President Benigno Aquino III (C) as he arrives at the opening dinner of the APEC Leaders Summit in Honolulu, Hawaii November 12, 2011. REUTERS
MANILA, Philippines - President Benigno Aquino III revealed that a United States-based company will start exploring a natural gas field in the northern part of the country next year.
“There is a new field that is going to start next year by an American company in the northern portion of the Philippines. There’s substantial gas deposits that we believe are already on the proven scale that will dwarf the existing Malampaya oil fields,” he said during a panel discussion at the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) CEO Summit held at the Sheraton Waikiki Hotel here in Honolulu, Hawaii.
“In terms of energy, we are second to America in exploiting geothermal resources. We have managed to have several other countries sharing the expertise that we do already have,” he said.
Aquino noted some of the exploration areas may be in areas that are disputed by several countries.
Nonetheless, the government is now trying to determine if these are within the United Nations Convention on Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), he said.
“We are hoping that all the signatories of the United Nations Convention will adhere to the stipulations of the convention and among them are the 200-mile exclusive economic zone,” he added.
He said there are mechanisms by which to settle the problems, in order that the country and its neighbors can benefit from the fields’ resources.