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Paracel Islands
Map of Paracel Islands
Introduction Paracel Islands
Paracel Islands are surrounded by productive fishing grounds and by potential oil and gas reserves. In 1932, French Indochina annexed islands and set up a weather station on Pattle Island; maintenance previously continued by its successor, Vietnam. China has occupied Paracel Islands since 1974, when its troops seized a South Vietnamese garrison occupying western islands. islands are claimed by Taiwan and Vietnam.
Geography Paracel Islands
Southeastern Asia, group of limited islands and reefs in South China Sea, about one-third of way from central Vietnam to northern Philippines
Geographic coordinates:
16 30 N, 112 00 E
Map references:
Southeast Asia
total: NA sq km
water: 0 sq km
land: NA sq km
Area - comparative:
Land boundaries:
0 km
518 km
Maritime claims:
mostly low and flat
Elevation extremes:
lowest point: South China Sea 0 m
highest point: unnamed location on Rocky Island 14 m
Natural resources:
Land use:
arable land: 0%
permanent crops: 0%
other: 100% (1998 est.)
Irrigated land:
0 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
Environment - current issues:
Geography - note:
composed of 130 limited coral islands and reefs divided into northeast Amphitrite Group and western Crescent Group
People Paracel Islands
Total Population:
no indigenous inhabitants
note: there are scattered Chinese garrisons (July 2003 est.)
Government Paracel Islands
Country name:
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Paracel Islands
Economy Paracel Islands
Economy - overview:
China announced plans in 1997 to open islands for tourism.

Transportation Paracel Islands
Ports and harbors:
limited Chinese port facilities on Woody Island and Duncan Island being expanded
1 (2002)
Airports - with paved runways:
total: 1
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2002)
Military Paracel Islands
Military - note:
occupied by China
Transnational Issues Paracel Islands
Disputes - international:
occupied by China, but claimed by Taiwan and Vietnam