CHINA'S top official in charge of energy resources said Guangdong's second nuclear plant should not be built in Daya Bay in the face of public anxiety in Hongkong. Minister of Energy Resources Mr Huang Yicheng said a decision to build a second plant in Daya Bay would ''invite more trouble'', given the fact Hongkong people were opposed to it. Chinese reports said earlier that Guangdong would make a decision on the building of a second plant this year. But a vice-chairman of the Guangdong Provincial People's Congress, Mr Yu Fei, said it was unlikely that would happen, adding that it was also yet to decide on the site. He maintained that the southern province was able to finance the project, but did not give an estimate on the costs. However, Mr Huang told the South China Morning Post funding would be a major problem for the Guangdong plant. ''We are talking about several billions of US dollars. It's not a small investment,'' he said. Three sites, Yangjiang, Daya Bay and Taishan, have been identified as possible places for the building of a second plant to help alleviate the problem of electricity shortage in Guangdong. ''They [the Guangdong authorities] think the facilities in Daya Bay can be used if a second plant is built in its vicinity. The argument is sound . . . But Hongkong people disagree,'' Mr Huang said. He claimed nuclear power was as important as thermal and hydro electricity for China's future economic development. In a related development, Mr Huang said China remained firm on its stance to tap the oil resources near the Spratlys Islands, an archipelago in the South China Sea whose sovereignty has been disputed by six Asian countries. ''We hope all the concerned parties can put aside differences over the sovereignty of the islands and seek joint exploration of the resources,'' he said. He admitted the dispute over sovereignty had affected the exploration of oil resources, but said: ''There's nothing to be negotiated over sovereignty.'' The minister claimed United States groups had been invited to inspect some islands, but insisted there had been no immediate development plans. Mr Huang warned there would be no room for negotiation if the other countries insisted to claim their sovereignty over the islands. He said it would be dangerous to rely on the Spratlys to help solve the shortage of oil resources in China. ''Exploration of oil resources involves high risk . . . Like the Tarim Basin, there have been no major findings, although many experts believed its resources were enormous,'' Mr Huang said.