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Tags: china | defense | budget | global | tensions

China's Defense Budget Up 7.2 Percent Amid Global Tensions

chinese flag with missiles in front

By    |   Sunday, 05 March 2023 10:06 PM EST

China announced on Sunday it plans to boost its defense budget by 7.2% this year to $224 billion and has set a growth target of “around 5%,”  CNN has reported.

Both figures were released at the start of the annual gathering of the National People’s Congress (NPC) in Beijing, attended by almost 3,000 over the next eight days.

“China’s economy is staging a steady recovery and demonstrating vast potential and momentum for further growth,” outgoing Premier Li Keqiang told delegates.

The report emphasized Beijing’s focus on ensuring stable growth, employment and prices amid global inflation and after a year of listless growth due to the coronavirus pandemic, according to CNN.

Amid a regional arms race and increasing international tensions, the rise in military spending was the second year in a row that the hike was more than 7%. 

It also marked the first time in the past decade that the budget growth rate has gone up for three straight years, as Beijing continues assert pressure on Taiwan.

China already has the world's largest navy by size and is adding to its fleet of nuclear submarines and stealth fighter jets.

“The armed forces should intensify military training and preparedness across the board, develop new military strategic guidance, devote greater energy to training under combat conditions and make well-coordinated efforts to strengthen military work in all directions and domains,” Lii said.

The NPC meeting is a major annual political event that takes place at the same time as a gathering of China’s top political advisory body, with the events known collectively as the Two Sessions, CNN reported.

The country's GDP expanded by only 3% last year, for the most part due to prolonged COVID restrictions, although the economic recovery has picked up pace in the last month.

Moody’s Investors Service has boosted its China growth forecast to 5% for both this year and next, up from 4% previously.

However, China's recovery is set against a global economy that is expected to be problematic this year due to increasing interest rates and Russia’s continued war in Ukraine.

Brian Freeman

Brian Freeman, a Newsmax writer based in Israel, has more than three decades writing and editing about culture and politics for newspapers, online and television.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

China announced on Sunday it plans to boost its defense budget by 7.2% this year to $224 billion and has set a growth target of "around 5%."
china, defense, budget, global, tensions
Sunday, 05 March 2023 10:06 PM
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