PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino III will visit Palawan on Monday, but he has no plan yet to make a side trip to Pag-asa Island, a municipality of the province and is being claimed also by China.

Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said the Chief Executive is set to inspect the Puerto Princesa Airport Development Project.

China has been claiming almost the entire South China Sea, including Pag-asa and other areas within the 200 exclusive economic zone of the Philippines.

Coloma said that repair of the airstrip in Pag-asa has been suspended due to territorial row with China.

"Kaya po itinigil ‘yung mga repair diyan ay dahil po doon sa pagtataguyod natin ng prinsipyo na kinakailangang magkaroon ng status quo sa mga lugar na sakop ng mga usapin sa maritime entitlements sa West Philippine Sea na katuwang din po ng ating istratehiya na rules-based and diplomatic approach na kung saan tayo ay naghain ng arbitration case sa UN (United Nations) tribunal," he said.

But he assured that the government continues with its military modernization program to improve the capability of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. (SDR/Sunnex)