Japan offered 10+2 - 40 meters Patrol boats with Philippines Maritime Security ties commitments

July 09, 2012: The Philippines and Japan have agreed to enhance their bilateral cooperation on "shared regional strategic concerns," including maritime security, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said.

The cooperation was forged after Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario met with his Japanese counterpart, Koichiro Gemba, and Deputy Prime Minister Katsura Okada during the DFA head's official visit to Tokyo last week.

"The two ministers engaged in comprehensive discussions reviewing key aspects of relations and affirmed their respective governments' commitments to advancing the multifaceted bilateral relations on the two countries' shared values and long history of cooperation," the DFA said in a statement.

Their discussion was focused on the refinement of political dialogue, economic cooperation, official development assistance and business-to-business and people-to-people ties, as well as on the furtherance of bilateral cooperation on shared regional strategic concerns, including maritime safety and disaster risk reduction, the DFA added.

The foreign office, however, did not provide details about the two officials' dialogue on maritime security-related matters.

Establishing Minimum credible Defense

Del Rosario earlier said that aside from the United States, three other countries—Japan, South Korea and Australia—were helping the Philippines establish a minimum credible defense posture to complement its diplomatic capacity in dealing with its territorial disputes with China in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).

Bewildered neighbors are closely monitoring the situation as china escalates the disputes in the West Philippines Sea (South China Sea) resulting the standoff in Panatag Shoal (Scarborough Shoal). Chinese government barred the Philippine Maritime Police from catching the Chinese poachers in the Philippines territory.

Chinese poachers are disguising civilian Chinese fishermen that equipped with military capabilities including GPS system and guided with instruction from china's army where to poach.

China used the same strategy by using disguising civilian Chinese fishermen back 1990's during the administration of former Philippines president Fidel Ramos and gained control the Mischief reef of the Kalayaan Islands a few kilometers from the mainland of the Province of Palawan and well within the Exclusive economic zone of the Philippines. Recently, china established a military garrison in the said reef.

Philippines is in no bout with china's capability. Concerned neighbors pledge to help the Philippine to establish a minimum credible defense posture and to deter china's invasion in the Philippine territory.

Meanwhile, China is also expanding to the waters of South Korea and hinting to gain control in the South Korea's administered "IEO DO" or "IEO Islet" south of Jeju Island. To date, South Korea accelerates its construction of a new Airbase in Jeju to have a strong deterrence capability against china's invasion to their territory.    

Not only the Philippines, Vietnam and South Korea suffered the hegemony plan of china but also the powerful Japan. Senkaku island of Japan is now annoyed by china's poachers with China Government Backups. Japan while discussing with the Philippines for the maritime issues, they are also bracing up to deter china's invasion to their territory.

12 patrol boats for the Philippines

Del Rosario disclosed that Tokyo was likely to provide the Philippine Coast Guard with 12 patrol boats.

"They're considering 10 40-meter boats on official development aid and two larger ones as grants," Del Rosario said.

Minister Shinsuke Shimizu, head of the embassy's chancery, said that Tokyo would continue to help the Philippine Coast Guard deal with its maritime safety and law enforcement concerns.

Shimizu clarified, however, that "it is of different nature from establishing the minimum credible defense capabilities" of the Philippines, "nor is it aimed at addressing a specific regional situation," referring to the dispute between Manila and Beijing regarding Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal.

The diplomat noted that "since 1990, Japan has been helping the Coast Guard in its capacity-building program."

Before Del Rosario's three-day trip to Japan, Shimizu said the DFA head would discuss with Gemba "ways to continue Japanese government cooperation with the Coast Guard."

"But it is cooperation for the purpose of dealing with various maritime safety and law enforcement issues, such as piracy and search-and-rescue," Shimizu explained.

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