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  • Dec 28, 2014
  • Updated: 11:46am

Typhoon Haiyan

Typhoon Haiyan, one of the strongest storms ever recorded, struck the Philippines in November 2013 with winds of up to 190 mph (305 kph). At least 10,000 people died in one Philippine province alone.


State media: China ‘should help typhoon-ravaged Philippines despite row’

China has offered US$100,000 in aid to the Philippines in the wake of Super Typhoon Haiyan

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 12 November, 2013, 4:34am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 12 November, 2013, 6:25pm


  • Yes: 87%
  • No: 13%
12 Nov 2013
  • Yes
  • No
Total number of votes recorded: 981

China should put aside its territorial dispute with the Philippines to help victims of Typhoon Haiyan, state-run media said on Tuesday, adding that doing so was in Beijing’s best interests.

The two countries are embroiled in a long-standing dispute over islands in the strategically vital South China Sea - which Beijing claims almost in its entirety - and Manila says Chinese vessels have occupied the Scarborough Shoal, which it claims, since last year.

Watch: US marines join Philippines typhoon rescue, looters abound

China, the world's second largest economy, has offered to give the Philippines US$100,000 (HK$775,000) for relief efforts, Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang announced on Monday.

It is the same amount as Vietnam, itself now battling to limit the damage from the storm which made landfall yesterday. Meanwhile, the US has sent US$20 million in aid, while Australia and Britain have pledged US$9.38 million and US$9.6 million respectively. 

The United Nations, Japan and the United States mobilised emergency relief teams and supplies after one of the biggest storms on record devastated the central Philippines on Friday. China's offer did not include personnel, but Qin said Beijing could proceed with further assistance after consulting Manila and relief agencies. 

The United States has sent 90 marines, aircraft, emergency shelters and 55 tonnes of emergency food. Tokyo is sending a team of 25 medical personnel.

The state-run Global Times newspaper said in an editorial on Tuesday the territorial row should not affect such decisions.

“It’s a must to aid typhoon victims in the Philippines,” the paper, which is close to the ruling Communist party, said.

But it added: “China’s international image is of vital importance to its interests. If it snubs Manila this time, China will suffer great losses.”

“Aid to the typhoon victims is a kind of humanitarian aid, which is totally different from foreign aid in the past made out of geopolitical concerns,” it said.

The donation comes a month to the day after China criticised the US for giving tacit backing to the Philippines’ stance after Manila had launched an arbitration case with the United Nations to challenge the legal validity of Beijing’s sweeping claims over the resource-rich South China Sea.

China’s decades-long boom has seen it become the world’s second-largest economy but Beijing has long been accused of using trade and aid to further its own agenda, particularly in Africa, where its influence has rocketed in recent years, and also in much of Southeast Asia.

It says it is open to friendly relations.

Video: Relief efforts intensify in Tacloban

As well as China and the Philippines, other countries also have overlapping claims to parts of the South China Sea, and tensions have risen sharply in recent years, with Manila and Hanoi accusing Beijing of increasing aggressiveness.

Typhoon Haiyan hit China after devastating parts of the Philippines, killing more than 10,000 people in one Philippine province alone. Reports out of China say the storm killed at least seven people in the southern province of Hainan and Guangxi region.

Despite an official death toll of 1,774, authorities in the Philippines fear that the toll could climb to more than 10,000. At least two million people in 41 provinces were affected by the disaster, with tens of thousands of houses destroyed.

Philippine President Benigno Aquino has declared a state of national calamity, allowing the government to use state funds for relief and rehabilitation and control prices.

Beijing's offer highlights the fine diplomatic line it needs to walk amid its ongoing territorial dispute with Manila in the South China Sea.

"Given the tense relationship between China and the Philippines, resentment among Chinese may be triggered if Beijing helps the Philippines," said Du Jifeng , a Southeast Asian affairs analyst at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

Qin denied any link between the aid and its relations with the Philippines.

Vietnam, despite itself being hit by a weakened Haiyan, offered emergency aid of US$100,000. It said it "stands by the Philippine people in this difficult situation".

Reaction to the news of China's donation among Chinese web users was mixed on Tuesday, with many commenting that Beijing should not have donated any aid.

"The Chinese government should not have offered aid in the first place to a country that’s unfriendly or even hostile to China. Instead, grass-roots organizations and individuals should be encouraged to offer aid," wrote a microblogger by the name of Mituofo.

IN PICTURES: Typhoon Haiyan leaves a trail of devastation

"China has so many impoverished areas that could use the aid money," said another called C_Q77

One commenter on the Global Times website wrote: “So many of China’s own children are starving and don’t have enough clothes to wear - Why would the government pretend to be a good guy to other countries while turning a blind eye to your own people?”

Agence France-Presse, Reuters

Video: More scenes of Philippines devastation



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This article is now closed to comments

Not an insult by China its partly politics as it cannot match US's efforts and influence you will see China splashing out if it was an African country with rich minerals... Also China's help does not include any equipment and personnel help yet ... China does have a lot of problems and poverty itself ... so its better than silent HK and especially as HK has so many Filipino descent residents ... US, Australia and Canada has many Filipino descent residents and see their response
Headlines in Western media:
"China's meager aid to the Philippines could dent its image"
Chinese who call for a stingy, indifferent attitude on part of China towards the natural disaster in the Philippines, are causing damage to China's long-term interest.
cannot agree more with Tan's comments. This is the time we should do something we feel proud of
At this difficult time I find many pinoy still arrogant and cursing the Chinese for their generous donation even hostility by Philliphine against them. I think China should have keep the money help it's own ppl who in need rather than been accused of double face, fetus eating and all kind of cursing. I pity the Chinese more than the pinoy.
What if typhoon Haiyan had hit Hong Kong? No problem, we would have let our hundreds of thousands of Philippine helpers work overtime and clear the mess, no?
Sending money isn't going to help. It'll probably disappear into some fat corrupt government "official" in PH.
The main problems are roads, transportation and logistics, none of which exists in PH. The roads are covered in debris, or have been washed away. You could send a billion dollars and it wouldn't do a thing to help those who need it right now.
Send canned goods, bottled water, first aid kits, clothes. Those can be at least air dropped into the disaster area. They can also be delivered by boats.
Sending money is a total waste. If you really want to help, then send supplies.
China may be the world's 2nd largest economy but it is most definitely a 1st class {D}ouche_Bag with a capital "D". They don't only think like an under-developed country but act like one. They've got no class ! Why don't they just invade this ravaged country while it is still in a state of shock. They have stooped to a new low.
China and Saudi Arabia have both offered $100,000 dollars - I can only see these offers as insult that try to humiliate the Philippine people. They disgust me!
Seems nobody here realizes the ramifications of Beijing's worry here for international image and backlash.The following article should invalidate some of the idiotic comments here and make people realize that the Chinese government is humstrung on who to appease. All their work for good image and respect hangs in this fact alone:
Even the popularly hated country in this hemisphere donated 200,000 usd for China's quake victims. This does not bode well as China has to maintain the image that it is on moral high ground in regards to its thorny relations to Philippines.While it also has to maintain the popular belief made by them locally that they are not bullying Philippines because of its size, but because they just decided to be not better. By the way, the article above is from China Daily.LOL
Who decide to publish this insignificant news has an ulterior motives. SCMDaily is a CCP mouthpiece. This paper no longer represent HK people. How much PRC donate to the Philippines is none of HK business. Don't drag HK into the PRC camp. PRC could easily keep quiet and let the world go unnoticed of their petty gesture.



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