- Senator Risa Hontiveros asked China to “pay up” for the maritime wealth they stole from the West Philippine Sea
- She noted a report stating that the damage caused by China in the Philippine waters have amounted to P800 billion
- Earlier, Hontiveros filed a bill seeking China to contribute to the Philippines’ COVID-19 efforts as payment for the damages
Senator Risa Hontiveros renewed her calls to hold China responsible for the damage it has caused on the West Philippine Sea.
According to Hontiveros, China has taken a lot of marine wealth in the West Philippine Sea that the damage now amounts to P800 billion. Citing data published by international journal Ecosystem Services, Hontiveros noted that the estimated value of reefs destroyed by China in Philippine waters for seven years is now up to P231.7 billion.
Hontivero stressed how China needs to compensate the Philippines for the damage.
“Time to pay up. The Chinese Embassy has long ignored our call when we asked them to pay more than P200-billion for the damage China has done on the WPS since 2013,” she said in a statement.
“But now, the damage to our own maritime environment has reached more than P800-billion. That’s why we continue to press for them to pay,” she added.
The lawmaker continued to note that based on the recent computations by investigative journalist Jarius Bondoc, China reportedly has a total of P644 billion fish catch which has been looted since 2014.
Last April 2020, Hontiveros filed a measure that seeks to make China contribute to the Philippines’ COVID-19 response. The bill asks China to pay over P200-billion worth of reparations. Hontiveros urged that now is the time to update the current computations.
“We cannot take back the marine resources that China has destroyed in the WPS. Let’s go after China for their debt. Let’s not let them get away for the
abuses they heap on our nation,” the senator said.