China Continues Rapid Military Buildup

May 24, 2006 – In an all out effort to expand their military might, China is expected to spend two to three times more on defense spending than their official government estimates. The Department of Defense’s 2006 China Military Power Report says China is expected to spend between $70 and $105 billion to expand their military this year, significantly more than the $35 billion China said they expect to spend.

The lack of transparency in China’s buildup was a major concern of the report.

“China’s leaders have yet to adequately explain the purposes or desired end-states of their military expansion. Estimates place Chinese defense expenditure at two to three times officially disclosed figures. The outside world has little knowledge of Chinese motivations and decision-making or of key capabilities supporting PLA modernization,” the report states.

China’s ongoing military buildup has given them the ability to project their military power well beyond the Taiwan Straits.

“The People’s Liberation Army is in the process of a long-term transformation from a mass army designed for protracted wars of attrition on its territory to a more modern force capable of fighting short, high-intensity conflicts,” the report states. “Long-term trends in China’s strategic nuclear forces modernization, land- and sea-based access denial capabilities, and emerging precision-strike weapons have the potential to pose credible threats to modern militaries operating in the region.”

Read the entire Washington Post article on the 2006 China Military Power Report.