By Jakub Šrámek*, Postgraduate student in International and Diplomatic studies at University College Prague
The South China Sea is one of the most contested areas in today’s world. Some politicians and journalists even see it as a contradiction that could lead to a war with far-reaching consequences in a relatively short time – this is not only an economic but also a power conflict in which the US is also involved, especially as a counterweight to influence the People’s Republic of China (PRC).
China, Vietnam, Brunei, Taiwan, Malaysia and the Philippines are making territorial claims in the South China Sea, which is a source of tension between states. The subject of the dispute is mainly economically significant parts of the sea (i.e. those with natural gas and oil deposits) and strategically important places like Paracel Islands, Spratly Islands, and Scarborough Shoal.
In this paper, I will be looking closer into the dispute. I will describe the importance of the South China Sea and present the claims of all important actors involved. Afterwards, I will outline some possible solutions to the dispute from the United States of America (USA’s) perspective.
*This research paper was written during the author’s internship at KEDISA (1 October 2021-31 March 2022).