China is planning to expand its mineral exploration activities in the seabed of the Indian Ocean.

The nation received approval from the International Seabed Authority (ISA) to explore 10,000km² in the south-west area of the ocean.

The country is now planning to make more investments in the expansion of its depth and the scope of research in the Indian Ocean, reports Press Trust of India.

The Economic Times quoted State Oceanic Administration (SOA) head Liu Cigui, saying that along with expanding the depths and scope of oceanic research, his company will also focus on understanding the polar regions and deep sea environments.

The Directorate of Naval Intelligence (DNI) of India has raised concerns over the deal, saying that the contract will provide China with an excuse to operate its warships besides compiling data on the vast mineral resources in India’s backyard.