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CIA WFB Seal.png Spratly Islands
Spratly Islands-CIA WFB Map.png
 
Introduction Spratly Islands
Background: The Spratly Islands consist of more than 100 small islands or reefs. They are surrounded by rich fishing grounds and potentially by gas and oil deposits. They are claimed in their entirety by China, Taiwan, and Vietnam, while portions are claimed by Malaysia and the Philippines. About 45 islands are occupied by relatively small numbers of military forces from China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam. Brunei has established a fishing zone that overlaps a southern reef, but has not made any formal claim.
 
Geography Spratly Islands
Location: Southeastern Asia, group of reefs and islands in the South China Sea, about two-thirds of the way from southern Vietnam to the southern Philippines
Geographic coordinates: 8 38 N, 111 55 E
Map references: Southeast Asia
Area: total: less than 5 sq km
note: includes 100 or so islets, coral reefs, and sea mounts scattered over an area of nearly 410,000 sq km of the central South China Sea
water: 0 sq km
land: less than 5 sq km
Area - comparative: NA
Land boundaries: 0 km
Coastline: 926 km
Maritime claims: NA
Climate: tropical
Terrain: flat
Elevation extremes: lowest point: South China Sea 0 m
highest point: unnamed location on Southwest Cay 4 m
Natural resources: fish, guano, undetermined oil and natural gas potential
Land use: arable land: 0%
permanent crops: 0%
other: 100% (2001)
Irrigated land: 0 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards: typhoons; serious maritime hazard because of numerous reefs and shoals
Environment - current issues: NA
Geography - note: strategically located near several primary shipping lanes in the central South China Sea; includes numerous small islands, atolls, shoals, and coral reefs
 
People Spratly Islands
Population: no indigenous inhabitants
note: there are scattered garrisons occupied by personnel of several claimant states (July 2004 est.)
 
Government Spratly Islands
Country name: conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Spratly Islands
 
Economy Spratly Islands
Economy - overview: Economic activity is limited to commercial fishing. The proximity to nearby oil- and gas-producing sedimentary basins suggests the potential for oil and gas deposits, but the region is largely unexplored; there are no reliable estimates of potential reserves; commercial exploitation has yet to be developed.
 
Transportation Spratly Islands
Ports and harbors: none; offshore anchorage only
Airports: 3 (2003 est.)
Airports - with paved runways: total: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 1
less than 914 m: 1 (2004 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2004 est.)
 
Military Spratly Islands
Military - note: Spratly Islands consist of more than 100 small islands or reefs, of which about 45 are claimed and occupied by China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam
This page was last updated on 1 January 2003



This is a snapshot of the CIA World Fact Book as it existed on 26 March 2005