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New vertical map shows full extent of China’s territory

2014-06-26 08:36 Global Times Web Editor: Li Yan
The vertical map Photo: Xinhua
The vertical map Photo: Xinhua

China unveiled its first official vertical national map to better serve the public alongside all previous versions of national maps, and China has never changed its stance on the South China Sea, the foreign ministry said on Wednesday.

"It's unnecessary to make further interpretations out of this. China has always held a consistent and clear stance on the South China Sea," said foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying.

The nation's first vertical map, published on Monday, is seen as a reaffirming gesture to emphasize China's sovereignty over the disputed waters in the South China Sea.

The new map gives equal weight to both land and sea, with the islands and waters of the South China Sea presented on the same scale in one map with the nine-dash demarcation line clearly marked.

Previous national maps were horizontal in orientation and focused on the country's land area, while the South China Sea was separately featured in a small box in the bottom corner.

"Horizontal maps can easily create misconceptions that China covers a wider range from west to east, while in fact the north-south distance is longer. It is because the measuring scale for the South China Sea box was only half of that of the main map," Shan Zhiqiang, executive editor of China National Geography, previously wrote on his Sina Weibo account.

The National Administration of Surveying, Mapping and Geoinformation said the new map presents detailed geographic features in the South China Sea. "It helps correct misconceptions that territories carry different weights, and fosters a better marine consciousness among the public, which is significant to secure territorial sovereignty," said Lei Yixun, editor-in-chief of Hunan Map Press, the map's publisher.

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