Philippines Alarmed By More 200 Chinese Ships Massing In Disputed Waters
If nothing else, the blockage of the Suez Canal by a massive container ship has served as an unwelcome reminder that chokepoints to global trade like the Straits of Hormuz, the Straits of Malacca and the Straits of Gibralter represent geopolitical risks that have perhaps haven't been fully appreciated by investors.
Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, China and Vietnam have competing territorial claims in the South China Sea. But China has pointedly ignored all these claims, instead viewing the South China Sea as something that belongs exclusively to Beijing. China shocked the world in 2016 when it ignored an international court ruling validating the Philippines' claims to the sea. Since then, tensions over the conflicting claims have complicated relations between the two Pacific powers.