Fish­ery ac­cord re­lates only to mat­ters of law en­force­ment: Manila

The China Post - - LOCAL -

The Philip­pines Min­istry of For­eign Af­fairs reaf­firmed Wed­nes­day that it is ne­go­ti­at­ing with Tai­wan on sign­ing a fish­ery law en­force­ment agree­ment, but said it will not touch on draw­ing a bor­der line in their over­lap­ping eco­nomic zones.

Min­istry spokesman Charles Jose said in a press con­fer­ence that the Philip­pine gov­ern­ment is re­view­ing a draft of the agree­ment and hopes that by set­ting up such a mech­a­nism, law en­force­ment author­i­ties on both sides can have guide­lines to fol­low when re­solv­ing dis­putes.

He added that the agree­ment will only pro­vide a stan­dard pro­ce­dure for de­tain­ing for­eign ships poach­ing in Philip­pine ter­ri­to­rial wa­ters and will not touch on sovereignty or ter­ri­to­rial is­sues.

He elab­o­rated that the agree­ment will be signed by the Taipei Eco­nomic and Cul­tural Of­fice in the Philip­pines and the Manila Eco­nomic and Cul­tural Of­fice in Taipei, since there are no diplo­matic re­la­tions be­tween the Philip­pines and Tai­wan.

Philip­pine Pres­i­dent Benigno Aquino III will con­vene a cross­de­part­ment meet­ing to re­view the draft of the agree­ment, but the tim­ing and de­part­ments to be rep­re­sented are not known at the mo­ment, Jose dis­closed.

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