The Straits Times
Published on Nov 11, 2012

China to ramp up development on disputed island


BEIJING (AFP) - China is to ramp up development on a disputed South China Sea island, a local government chief has said, in a move likely to stoke a growing territorial row with its neighbours.

The development of roads, water supply and drainage systems will be stepped up in the new "capital" city of Sansha on Yongxing, one of the islands that make up the disputed Paracel chain, Mr Luo Baoming, Communist Party Secretary of southern Hainan province, told state television on Saturday.

He also said steps will be taken to enforce China's "legal rights" in the region, which includes other island chains which are the subject of competing claims by Asian countries.

Beijing enraged Vietnam and caused concern in Washington when it announced the establishment of a new city and military garrison at Sansha in July.