Territorial Disputes in the South China Sea: Economic Implications for the Region

  • Umme Laila MPhil Scholar, National Defence Uiversity, Pakistan
  • Dr. Fouzia Amin National Defence University, Pakistan
  • Zafar Hassan National Defence University, Pakistan
Keywords: South China Sea, Economic Implications, Strategic Competition, ASEAN, UNCLOS, Strait of Malacca, Dispute, Nine-dash line


This research paper explores the territorial disputes in the South China Sea and their economic implications for the regional countries focusing on their geo-economic and geostrategic significance. The South China Sea holds substantial importance because of the high percentage of global trade passing through it. The historical claims of Beijing on the Paracel and Spratly Islands against the UNCLOS provide a baseline of territorial disputes with ASEAN countries. For research methodology, the author relies on qualitative analysis using secondary data sources. To develop a theoretical framework for this complex issue, the author applies theories of Neo-Realism, Maritime Regional Security Complex, and Security dilemma. This paper is aimed at exploring economic implications for regional states in case of potential conflicts emerging in case of engagement among regional as well as external powers. This research has emphasized the development of a Beijing-ASEAN forum focused on establishing economic, diplomatic, and security ties for the creation of the Eastern Economic Block at a broader level.