Counting the Cost

How China came to dominate the South China Sea

As China contests islands from Japan to Malaysia, it has deployed its ‘maritime militia’ across the South China Sea.

In March, more than 200 Chinese fishing vessels occupied a reef off the coast of the Philippines.

They were manned not by fishermen but ex-navy officers, who operate nearly identical vessels estimated to number 3,000.

China, which claims the South China Sea as its own, has built a navy that is bigger in number than that of the United States.

Graham Ong-Webb, adjunct fellow at RSIS, explains how China came to dominate the sea.

Plus: Heejung Chung, reader in sociology and social policy at the University of Kent, tells us if the four-day week could become a reality.