BEIJING, March 28 (Xinhua) -- China Yuzheng 45001, the largest fishery administration ship in south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, had reached Xisha Islands and would assist China Yuzheng 311 in patrolling the South China Sea for at least 15 days, China Daily reported Saturday.
"China Yuzheng 45001 will assist China Yuzheng 311 to patrol the South China Sea to curb illegal fishing activity and safeguard China's interests and rights in its Exclusive Economic Zones," Chen Guoliang, in charge of fishery administration and supervision in the region, was quoted as saying.
After sailing from Beihai on Monday, China Yuzheng 45001 had interacted with China Yuzheng 311 and jointly conducted patrol missions with the latter, Chen said.
After a voyage of more than 2,000 nautical miles, China Yuzheng311 sailed back to Guangzhou on Wednesday without going further onto Nansha Islands, he said.
"We haven't received any instructions from the Ministry of Agriculture on whether China Yuzheng 45001 will patrol the waters off Nansha Islands," Chen said.
China Yuzheng 45001, with a water displacement of 570 tonnes, reached Xisha Islands on Thursday morning, the second time it was doing so after a 17-day patrolling effort in 2007.
"Backed by the ministry, we are working with the fishery administration in Guangzhou to protect our waters," Chen said.
He said that more fishery patrol ships would be built in Guangxi to guard the waters of the South China Sea.
On March 10, the administration of Fishery and Fishing Harbor Supervision of the South China Sea in Guangzhou sent China Yuzheng311, the country's biggest fishery patrol vessel with a water displacement of 4,500 tonnes, to curb illegal fishing.
The ship arrived in Xisha Islands on March 15. It had not yet been decided whether China Yuzheng 311 would return to its missionin the South China Sea, a person surnamed Zhu, who is in charge of the Administration of Fishery and Fishing Harbor Supervision of the South China Sea, said Friday.
Zhu also said that another fishery patrol vessel of 2,500 tonnes displacement capacity, which can carry helicopters on board, was likely to be sent into the South China Sea next year.
"We will be joining efforts and building up capacities to prepare for the challenges and complications in the South China Sea," Zhu was quoted as saying.