BEIJING, Sept. 6 (Xinhua) -- China plans to launch eight more satellites by 2020 to further improve the country's maritime monitoring network, a national English-language newspaper reported Thursday.
The planned launches will include four satellites for observing sea color, two for observing ocean currents, and two maritime radar satellites, according to the China Daily report, quoting official sources.
Jiang Xingwei, director of the National Satellite Ocean Application Service, was quoted as saying the plan has been approved by the National Development and Reform Commission, the country's top economic planning authority.
The new satellites will greatly improve China's ability to observe and supervise the marine environment, Jiang said.
According to the report, China already has three satellites that monitor its territorial waters and islands, including the Diaoyu Islands and Huangyan Island, but they cannot be used to focus on a fixed location. It is believed that the launch of the two maritime radar satellites will add that capability.