China has constructed a lighthouse on its artificial islands in the disputed South China Sea to provide efficient navigation services for maritime safety.
The country’s Ministry of Transport on Tuesday held a completion ceremony for the construction of a 55-metre (180-ft) high lighthouse on Zhubi Reef of Nansha Islands, marking the start of its operation, Xinhua reported.
The lighthouse provides positioning reference, route guidance and navigation safety information to ships, and can improve navigation management and emergency response.
China says much of its construction in the South China Sea is designed to fulfill its international obligations in terms of maritime safety, search and rescue and scientific research, the report said.
The South China Sea is an important maritime area and major fishing ground.
"However, high traffic density, complex navigation condition, severe shortage in aids and response forces have combined to threaten navigation safety and hindered economic and social development in the region," according to the report.
China has lighthouse projects on two other reefs in the area - Cuarteron Reef and Johnson South Reef.