MANILA – A United Nations-backed arbitral tribunal is set to conduct a hearing in July 2015 to decide whether it has jurisdiction on the case submitted by Manila against Beijing regarding the disputed South China Sea.
The arbitral tribunal at Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA), based in The Hague, The Netherlands, noted that while China has refused to participate in the proceedings, it will consider the latter’s communications, including its position paper, ”as constituting a plea concerning the arbitral tribunal’s jurisdiction.”
”The Arbitral Tribunal will conduct a hearing in July 2015 to address the objections to jurisdiction set out in China’s Position Paper. The Arbitral Tribunal will also consider other matters concerning its jurisdiction and the admissibility of the Philippines’ claims,” the tribunal said.
China’s position paper, released in December 2014 just before the deadline set by the tribunal for China to file its counter-memorial, challenged the jurisdiction of the arbitral tribunal in hearing the case.