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Friday 18 Aug 2017 | 08:16 | SYDNEY
Friday 18 Aug 2017 | 08:16 | SYDNEY

Japan-China: It's a gas, gas, gas

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17 June 2008 17:09

What was I saying just the other day about Japan needing to do more to resolve various territorial disputes with its neighbours? Well, when it comes to at least one of those disputes, the Japanese (and Chinese) are way ahead of me, and almost ready to announce some big news about joint exploitation of gas resources in disputed parts of the East China Sea. This quote from the FT story was interesting:

Estimates of how much gas is available in the East China Sea have varied widely, but the dependence of both sides on imported energy for economic growth has added to the sensitivity of the dispute over extraction rights.

There's a message in that for the 'coming resource wars' crowd: despite these sensitivities, Japan and China made a deal anyway. Yes, competition for scarce resources can raise tensions, but it also increases the incentive to cooperate. 

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