The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and China agreed on a 10-year plan through 2027 to protect the coasts and marine resources in the East Sea while trying to settle territorial disputes in the waters, said a document issued on November 13 by involved parties' leaders.
The full text of the China-ASEAN Declaration for a decade of coastal and marine environmental protection in the East Sea (2017-2027) was released following a meeting between the leaders of the 10 bloc member countries and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang earlier in the day in Manila, the Philippines.
The two-page document stated: "The governments of ASEAN member states and China are committed to meet the aspirations of this Declaration."
The leaders, according to the declaration, acknowledged that “the preservation and sustainable management of the coastal and marine environment is vital to the economic well-being and enhanced quality of life of the peoples of ASEAN member states and China."
"Pending a comprehensive and durable settlement of territorial and jurisdictional disputes, the parties concerned may explore or undertake relevant cooperative activities...without prejudice to the positions of the concerned parties to the dispute," they added.