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Benham Rise now PH Rise

President Duterte has officially renamed the Benham Rise, a 24-million hectare undersea region located northeast of Luzon, to Philippine Rise to assert the country’s ownership of the controversial territory.

Duterte authorized the name change of the undersea plateau in Executive Order No. 25 in official Philippine maps and directed the Department of Foreign Affairs to inform concerned international organizations about it.

“The undersea feature presently known as ‘Benham Rise’ in local and international maps and charts shall henceforth be referred to as the ‘Philippine Rise,” the order read.

“In the exercise of its sovereign rights and jurisdiction, the Philippines has the power to designate its submarine areas with appropriate nomenclature for purposes of the national mapping system,” it added.

EO 25 stated that the undersea region is located within the Philippine exclusive economic zone and continental shelf.
The area is also subject to the sovereign rights and jurisdiction of the Philippines pursuant to the Constitution, national legislation, and the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

The National Mapping and Resource Information Authority has been directed to produce new maps and charts bearing the name Philippine Rise to describe the undersea landmass.

All government agencies have also been directed to use the new name in all official documents in referring to the region. (Genalyn D. Kabiling)