US Navy Commander Warns of South China Sea Nations Increasing Defense Budgets

The U.S. Pacific Fleet Commander has warned of a possible arms race in the disputed South China Sea which could engulf the region, as nations become increasingly tempted to use military force to settle territorial spats instead of international law.

Commander Admiral Scott Swift urged nations, like China, to seek arbitration to settle maritime disputes.

“My concern is that after many decades of peace and prosperity, we may be seeing the leading edge of a return of “might makes it right” to the region,” Swift said on Monday in a speech in Hawaii, according to a copy seen by Reuters.

“Claimants and non-claimants alike are transferring larger shares of national wealth to develop more capable naval forces beyond what is needed merely for self defense,” Swift said.

Asked about Swift’s comments, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said: “Certain countries are exaggerating tensions in the South China Sea region, which is in reality to create confusion and meddle in the South China Sea. China is resolutely opposed to this.”

via CNBC

Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza