China on Sunday reacted guardedly to India's plans to establish a tsunami warning system in the South China Sea, saying the proposal can be a part of the existing mechanism being operated by it since last year.
"Strengthening the tsunami early warning research conforms to the interests of all parties," the Chinese Foreign Ministry said in response to a question.
"China and the relevant countries in the region in accordance with the requirements of the United Nations agencies, in the South China sea, have established the related facilities and systems," it said.
"The parties concerned can discuss relevant cooperation issues under the existing cooperation mechanisms," it said.
China, which claims almost all of the South China Sea, said its tsunami system in the area had begun issuing alerts though the system is under construction.
China feels that India's proposal should be a part of its system.
China in the past had warned India to stay away from the hotly-contested waters, over which Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam have counter claims.
India has put in place its own tsunami-alert system after the 2004 deadly tsunami.
M Rajeevan, secretary in the Ministry of Earth Sciences, told the media last month that India already had a system in place to provide tsunami warnings to south-east and south Asian nations.
"India is the chairperson of RIMES (Regional Integrated Multi-hazard Early Warning System for Asia and Africa). We are also a major contributor in terms of resources. So we are exploring the possibility of having a tsunami early warning system in the South China Sea," Rajeevan had said.