Country's Backgrounds and Profiles...
The Transatlantic Education Mega-Site...
Location: Southeastern Asia, group of reefs and islands in the South China Sea, about two-thirds of the way from southern Vietnam to the southern Philippines
Geographic coordinates: 8 38 N, 111 55 E
Map references: Southeast Asia
Area - comparative: NA
Land boundaries: 0 km
Coastline: 926 km
Maritime claims: NA
Natural resources: fish, guano, undetermined oil and natural gas potential
Irrigated land: 0 sq km (1993)
Natural hazards: typhoons; serious maritime hazard because of numerous reefs and shoals
Environment - current issues: NA
Geography - note: strategically located near several primary shipping lanes in the central South China Sea; includes numerous small islands, atolls, shoals, and coral reefs
no indigenous inhabitants
Data code: PG
Economy - overview: Economic activity is limited to commercial fishing. The proximity to nearby oil- and gas-producing sedimentary basins suggests the potential for oil and gas deposits, but the region is largely unexplored, and there are no reliable estimates of potential reserves; commercial exploitation has yet to be developed.
Ports and harbors: none
Airports: 4 (1999 est.)
Airports - with paved runways:
Airports - with unpaved runways:
Military - note: Spratly Islands consist of more than 100 small islands or reefs, of which about 45 are claimed and occupied by China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam
Disputes - international: all of the Spratly Islands are claimed by China, Taiwan, and Vietnam; parts of them are claimed by Malaysia and the Philippines; in 1984, Brunei established an exclusive fishing zone, which encompasses Louisa Reef in the southern Spratly Islands, but has not publicly claimed the island