Tuesday, December 04, 2012
Arms Race Update - Indian Navy to South China Sea
India has served notice that its navy is ready to sail into the South China Sea to protect the country's oil interests there.
Indian Navy Chief Admiral D.K Joshi said that, while India was not a territorial claimant in the South China Sea, it was prepared to act, if necessary, to protect its maritime and economic interests in the region.
"When the requirement is there, for example, in situations where our country's interests are involved, for example ONGC ... we will be required to go there and we are prepared for that," Joshi told a news conference.
"Now, are we preparing for it? Are we having exercises of that nature? The short answer is yes," he said.
...India has sparred diplomatically with China in the past over its gas and oil exploration block off the coast of Vietnam.
Any display of naval assertiveness by India in the South China Sea would likely fuel concern that the navies of the two rapidly growing Asian giants could be on a collision course as they seek to protect trade routes and lock in the supply of coal, minerals and other raw material from foreign sources.
Admiral Joshi described the modernization of China's navy as "truly impressive" and a source of major concern for India.