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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Philippines in record defence spending plan amid China tensions

BRP Sierra Madre  (LT-57)The Philippines plans to spend a record 25 billion pesos (Dh2 billion or $552 million) next year mainly to bolster its claims in the disputed South China Sea, officials said on Tuesday.

The proposed 2016 national budget, which President Benigno Aquino is to present to parliament for approval on Monday, would allot funds to acquire navy frigates and patrol aircraft, budget and defence officials said.

“We need to protect what is clearly within our territorial jurisdiction,” Budget Secretary Florencio Abad said, when asked if the increase was due to the Philippines’ maritime row with China.

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