Amid Chinese presence, Navy wants to stay in Sangley Point


MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Navy is opposing a plan by the Cavite provincial government to boot the military service command out of Sangley Point in Cavite as part of a P500-billion airport project that is expected to ease congestion at Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia) in neighboring Manila.

Vice Adm. Giovanni Carlo Bacordo, the Navy’s flag officer in command, cited particularly the involvement in the project of China Communications Construction Co. Inc. (CCCC), one of the Chinese companies recently banned by the United States for its alleged role in the illegal construction of artificial islands on maritime features in the South China Sea, including the West Philippine Sea within the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone.

The proposed Cavite-initiated Sangley Point International Airport (SPIA) is a joint venture between CCCC and taipan Lucio Tan’s MacroAsia Corp. Last week, President Rodrigo Duterte gave the green light to US-blacklisted Chinese firms to participate in the Philippines’ infrastructure programs.

Bacordo said the reported role of CCCC in the militarization of the South China Sea had raised eyebrows among retired and active security officials over the SPIA project. They want to keep the Navy’s presence at the strategically located Sangley Point, a former US naval base, he said.
“All the more we want to remain there so to ensure that there are no security violations,” he told over the weekend.

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