Issue 8 2021

A Strategic Proposal for Malaysia With Respect to the South China Sea Arbitration

by Jessica MAZZEO

China has claimed sovereignty over the islands and archipelagos within the South China Sea dating back to 1947 when the ‘eleven-dash line’ was first published by the Nationalist government of the Republic of China. Malaysia is one country that is particularly impacted by China’s claim, which includes the Spratly Islands, a major pathway for global trade and home to marine life, and oil and gas reserves. This submission discusses the ruling of the Arbitral Tribunal established under Annex VII to the 1982 United Nation’s Convention on Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) in The Republic of the Philippines versus The People’s Republic of China (Philippines v China) – also commonly referred to as ‘The South China Sea Arbitration’ – and proposes a strategy for Malaysia.

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