As part of a soft-diplomacy effort, India is looking to have South China Sea countries such as Vietnam, Malaysia and Philippines use the tsunami early warning-system developed by India. China, too has been approached, said a senior official in the Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES), but a deal is unlikely yet.
ABOUT THE TSUNAMI ALERT SYSTEM
1. Since a deadly tsunami struck Tamil Nadu in 2004, India has put in place its own tsunami-alert system over the years that immediately warns concerned authorities in India of any large earthquake in the Indian Ocean and the threat it poses.
2. However, because of limited data on the historical occurrence of tsunamis, scientists at the Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS) have developed a technique that uses mathematical modelling to estimate if an earthquake, in India’s oceanic neighbourhood, will result in a tsunami.
3. India has expanded its modelling capabilities to include countries in the South China sea and so it can be useful to them too.
India isn’t expecting a commercial deal to result but “fame and leadership” from the effort which would help with broader government efforts. The South China sea is a controversial region with China exerting territorial rights over a large part. Some of these territorial claims have been challenged by Vietnam, Malaysia and the Philippines.
Conditions put up by India
India so far has only said that all countries must abide by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), which governs how countries must respect international waters and the ocean boundaries of countries. China too is a signatory to this convention.
The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), also called the Law of the Sea Convention or the Law of the Sea treaty, is the international agreement that defines the rights and responsibilities of nations with respect to their use of the world's oceans.