BEIJING - India will pay a heavy price for exploring oil in the
disputed areas of South China Sea, said a leading Chinese official.
‘China will not stand any joint cooperation in our claimed maritime
areas’, said Wu Shicun, President of the government-run National
Institute of South China. Wu was referring to joint exploration project
by ONGC-Videsh and a Vietnamese oil company in South China Sea. ‘There
are a lot of economic and political risks’ for the Indian oil company,
Wu said. The Indian company involved in exploring oil in the disputed
area should do a proper cost benefit analysis, he said. About 40 per
cent of the area in the two offshore blocks under exploration by India
falls in the disputed zone, he said. Wu said India and Japan should
‘play a positive role in pushing for settlement’ of the problem. The
Chinese government will not dilute its claims over the disputed islands
because ‘nationalism prevails strongly in China’, he added.