Many analysts from Australia have raised their objections to China’s placement of a massive oil rig, accompanied by a large fleet of vessels, in Vietnam’s waters.

The Interpreter, a paper organ of the Lowy Institute for International Policy, on May 9 posted an article arguing that politicians from the US should be concerned about the economic and security threats posed by the China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC).

The placement of the HD-981 rig into the Vietnam’s exclusive economic zone demonstrates China’s political ambitions, the article stated.

The article continued by saying China’s behavour has been aggressive and reckless, which no private commercial operator would undertake.

Earlier on May 8, The Interpreter also posted the opinion of Malcolm Cook, former East Asia Programme Director at the institute, who confirmed that China’s acts run counter to the spirit and contents of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) which China signed with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in 2002.

Cook said China’s movement of the rig into an oilfield close to Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelago might negatively affect the solidarity among ASEAN members and damage trust in the DOC, which offers an important diplomatic channel to settle territorial disputes between China and the bloc.-VNA