Manila: In a further likely exacerbation of the tense standoff between the Philippines and China over disputed maritime boundaries, Philex Petroleum is ready to start drilling two more wells in the South China Sea.
London-listed Forum Energy will likely start drilling the appraisal wells in its Sampaguita gas field in the Reed Bank, which the Philippines calls Recto Bank, in early 2016, said Philex chairman Manuel Pangilinan.
Philex says its efforts to sound out China’s energy giant CNOOC over a joint venture plan to explore the wells have come to nothing.
China claims nearly all of the South China Sea, while the Philippines and Vietnam, along with Malaysia, Taiwan and Brunei, claim parts of it. [23/05/14]