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17 September
Tuesday

World

China want expand it influence in Antarctica

However US has big opposition against Asia activates

Photo: Xinhua

/NOVOSTIVL/ China is leading an effort to turn the highest point in Antarctica into a special zone for “scientific research and protecting the environment” and says it is open to working with other countries. This article appeared in the South China Morning Post.

The foreign ministry said Beijing was taking the lead in “open negotiations” to turn Dome Argus, which is also known as Dome A, into a protected region – or Antarctic Specially Managed Area (ASMA).

China has the biggest presence on Dome Argus and was the first nation to reach the remote plain of ice, at 4,093 metres above sea level, in a land expedition in 2005, according to Chinese researchers.

It established the Kunlun station there 10 years ago, setting up research facilities including a telescope array for astronomical observation and monitoring space debris.

But the US has since set up its own, temporary base about 100km (62 miles) away from Kunlun, which some Chinese researchers see as an attempt to block Beijing’s ASMA plan.

China has stepped up its activities in Antarctica in recent years, building a permanent airfield, two permanent stations, Great Wall and Zhongshan, and two seasonal stations, Kunlun and Taishan. A fifth Chinese station is also being built.

Chinese scientists say the US has also expanded its presence in the region, raising concerns that competition between the two countries has now been extended to the South Pole.

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