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Amid Russia-Ukraine War, China Hikes Defence Budget, Focus On ‘Combat Readiness’

In the midst of the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine, China has increased its annual defence budget by 7.1% to US $230 billion from US $209 billion last year, raising eyebrows in India.

The Chinese government has proposed a 1.45 trillion-yuan (USD 230 billion) defence budget for fiscal year 2022, a 7.1% year-on-year increase, according to state-run China Daily, citing draught budget proposals presented by Premier Li Keqiang to the National People’s Congress (NPC), the country’s parliament, today.

The increase increases China’s defence budget to more than three times that of India’s defence budget of 5.25 lakh crore (approximately USD 70 billion) for 2022.

China’s defence spending surpassed USD 200 billion for the first-time last year.

In his work report to China’s Parliament, Chinese Premier Li called for the People’s Liberation Army to “deepen comprehensive combat readiness” (PLA).

To defend the country’s sovereignty, security, and development interests, he said the Chinese Army must “carry out military struggles in a resolute and flexible manner.”

The increase in China’s defence budget for this year comes amid the country’s standoff with India in eastern Ladakh, as well as rising political and military tensions with the United States.

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