Sunday, February 25, 2024

Chinese military industry would surpass the West by 2023, according to Pentagon report

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“China's military industry now produces more defense equipment than the industry of the United States, its Pacific theater allies, and its European allies combined.” It is in these terms that the new American national defense industrial strategy, currently being finalized by the Pentagon, poses the problem of the unfavorable industrial and capability balance of power which will apply to American forces in the Pacific facing China .

While speaking one last time to the deputies of the Defense Committee, Admiral Pierre Vandier, Chief of Staff of the French Navy, declared in August 2022 that within 10 years , the Chinese Navy would be numerically 2.5 times superior to the US Navy, while it received, according to him, the equivalent of the French Navy every 4 years in new ships.

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According to the French general officer, it would only be possible, faced with such a hydra in the making, to confront it by bringing together all Western naval and air forces, in the hope of containing this threat. This statement, although deliberately designed to make an impression on the part of a chief of staff just a stone's throw from retirement, could well itself be too optimistic.

chinese military industry new corvette
The construction of a new type of stealth corvette could be observed at China's Liaonan shipyards. The technological gap between Chinese and Western production is tending to shrink rapidly.

Indeed, according to a Pentagon report in preparation, extracts of which were obtained by Politico journalists , it could well be that Chinese production of military equipment will exceed that of the United States, but also that of the together with its leading allies in the Pacific theater (Australia, South Korea, Japan, New Zealand, the Philippines and Taiwan) and in Europe, in most major areas of military action.

China's military industry produces more than the United States and its allies combined

As part of the drafting of the first national industrial strategy, led by the head of Pentagon acquisitions, William LaPlante, the Pentagon services have, in fact, drawn up a most alarming picture concerning the comparative production of defense equipment by American industry, and by the Chinese military industry.

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Unsurprisingly, the report announces that Chinese industrial production rates are very significantly higher than those supported by American industry, even if it recognizes that American equipment is superior to that in service in the Chinese armies. .

The report estimates, above all, that the cumulative defense industrial production of the United States, its Pacific Theater allies, as well as its European NATO allies, would also be numerically lower than that of the defense industry. Chinese defense, without risking giving a quantified assessment of the imbalance in question.

China is the only country, apart from the United States, to massively implement a domestically designed stealth fighter, the J-20.

This assertion highlights significant future difficulties for the Western bloc. First of all, adding European production to this calculation serves more to reinforce the effectiveness of the demonstration than to reflect a real balance of power.

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Fabrice Wolf
Fabrice Wolf
A former French naval aeronautics pilot, Fabrice is the editor and main author of the site. His areas of expertise are military aeronautics, defense economics, air and submarine warfare, and Akita inu.

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