Gov’t asserts claim in South China Sea, bids energy blocs

The Philippines again defied China’s claim on all of South China Sea when it held the auction of 3 energy blocs near Palawan on Tuesday, July 31. It accepted bids from 3 groups — units led by Pangilinan and Lopez, as well as Helios Petroleum — for Areas 3, 4, and 5 in the second and final leg of the bid opening for the 4th Philippine Energy Contracting Round (PECR4), which China protested. Over the next 100 days, the Department of Energy will review these bids and President Aquino will sign Service Contracts to award the right to conduct exploration activities in these areas.

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