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14

China Don't Speak

China says it has no reason to provide Japan with details of East China Sea gas exploration

The spokesman for China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kong Quan, said at a routine press conference held on September 8 that China had "no reason" to accede to the Japanese request to provide materials and statistics pertaining to the development of natural gas resources in the East China Sea.

Kong Quan said that there was long-standing dispute between the two countries over the demarcation of territorial waters in the East China Sea, and that China and Japan had not yet engaged in discussions and negotiations over the issue.

Japan insists that the natural division between the two countries lies in the "median line". However, as Kong Quan noted, "China does not accept the median line."

"To solve the problems of the East China Sea conflict," he continued, "both sides should, through the use of peaceful negotiation methods, protect the stability of the East China Sea Region and avoid elevating the conflict. This is of benefit to both sides."

As Interfax has been reporting, Japan has been increasingly vocal in its claim that the development by China of the Chunxiao Gas Field in the East China Sea might infringe on its own territorial waters. In June this year, Japanese Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi told her Chinese counterpart, Li Zhaoxing, that Japan could not possibly come to an agreement with China on the disputed gas resources until China had provided the exact coordinates of the Chunxiao Field, as well the detailed figures relating to other explorations in the area.