The naval chiefs from the US and dozens of Asian-Pacific nations, including Vietnam, on April 22 adopted a code of conduct aimed at improving communication at sea to reduce the possibility of conflict.

Australian media reports that the Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea was approved by such countries as the US, China, Japan, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Vietnam at the Western Pacific Naval Symposium in the eastern Chinese coastal city of Qingdao.

The pact outlines how naval ships should communicate and manoeuvre when they unexpectedly come into contact in sea lanes surrounding China, Japan and Southeast Asia.

Although not legally binding, it is said to help establish international standards in relation to the use of the sea lanes.-VNA