Ministry of Foreign Affairs
July 14, 2020
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of China (Taiwan) states the following position related to ROC sovereignty over the South China Sea Islands:
1. The South China Sea Islands are part of the territory of the Republic of China. That the ROC is entitled to all rights over the South China Sea Islands and their relevant waters in accordance with international law and the law of the sea is beyond dispute. On July 19, 2016, President Tsai Ing-wen outlined four principles and five actions to deal with South China Sea issues together with the international community.
MOFA hereby reiterates the aforementioned four principles:
1.1. Disputes in the South China Sea should be settled peacefully in accordance with international law and the law of the sea, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS);
1.2. The ROC should be included in multilateral mechanisms aimed at resolving disputes;
1.3. States concerned have an obligation to uphold the freedom of navigation and of overflight in the region; and
1.4. Disputes should be resolved by setting aside differences and promoting joint development. Through negotiations conducted on the basis of equality, the ROC is willing to work with other States concerned to advance peace and stability, as well as protect and develop resources in the region.
2. The government’s position concerning sovereignty over the South China Sea Islands and its commitment to peaceful settlement of disputes remain unwavering. We firmly oppose any attempt by a claimant state to resolve disputes in the South China Sea by means of intimidation, coercion, or force.
3. MOFA welcomes statements issued by relevant states adherent to that claims over the South China Sea should be in conformity with international law and norms—including the 1982 UNCLOS—and emphasizing that any claim inconsistent with international law should not be accepted. MOFA also encourages States concerned to include Taiwan in multilateral mechanisms aimed at resolving disputes, jointly safeguarding peace and stability in the region.