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PH-China oil, gas exploration talks to resume in May —DFA

Discussions between the Philippines and China on a possible joint oil and gas exploration in the West Philippine Sea will resume next month, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Tuesday. 

In a statement, the agency said representatives from both countries are set to meet for preparatory talks in Beijing “sometime in May.”

This meeting will cover parameters and terms of reference regarding the maritime exploration.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Enrique Manalo earlier said China proposed to begin talks again on the oil and gas and the Philippines agreed to it.

This plan was, however, questioned by some legislators with Senator Francis Tolentino on Sunday calling on the DFA to be cautious about it as an agreement could lead to increased Chinese presence in the territory.

He also said that the Senate should be involved in the discussion between the two countries as this may be an extension of our foreign policy.

In response to this, Manalo assured Tolentino that updates on the matter will be provided. —Giselle Ombay/KG, GMA Integrated News