Navy calls to consider maritime security in planned Chinese-backed development of PHL islands

“We’re calling their attention na please consider the security implication of these islands or of these locations should the national government or higher leadership desires or decides to convert it into something more useful than its current state,” Philippine Navy spokesman Captain Jonathan Zata said with regards to the planned development of Fuga in Cagayan Province; and Grande and Chiquita islands in Subic Bay in partnership with Chinese investors.

“Ang importante we would be having access to these locations when exigencies come and emergency. The security of the nation is of paramount importance,” Captain Zata said. “The AFP, Air Force, Army and Navy would have access to these different islands and islets.”

“We have learned lessons in the past na there were features that were not, dahil nga limitado capability natin, hindi natin nabantayan ng maayos and we are trying to avoid any similar situation na wala na tayong magagawa,” he added.

“It’s significance is not only economic but more importantly ‘yun nga ‘yung maritime strategic security nito,” he said.

“So those are the things na hina-highlight ng Navy na please consider na these important features, locations are essential in maintaining our strategic maritime security,” Zata added.

During the August 5 press briefing, Presidential Spokesperson and Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Secretary Salvador Panelo said they “will wait for the National Security Adviser and the Secretary of National Defense give their comments on the security issue affecting those three areas.”