China has set aside 1.268 trillion yuan ($178.2 billion)for its military projects which is a little more than double it had dedicated for the same in 2011.
The defense budget growth rate stands at 6.6%, halving from 12.7% in 2011, according to a draft budget report to be submitted to the National People’s Congress (NPC).
In 2019, China announced defense spending of around 1.2 trillion yuan ($177 billion) at the NPC, which is the world’s second largest.
A Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) report published in January of this year suggested that China is the second-largest arms producer in the world, behind the United States but ahead of Russia.
“The increased defense budget can ensure the Chinese military's major programs and key spending fields are not affected by the pandemic and will remain on schedule,” Wei Dongxu, a military expert, was quoted as saying by Global Times.
Among other big ticket projects in the pipeline, China plans to build its third aircraft carrier and possibly, a carrier-based jet. It has also accelerated work on Type 075 helicopter carriers, developed a variety of guns and vehicles: tanks and air-dropped armored vehicles, built a number of J-20 stealth jets, radars and drones.