China has held this Sunday the annual meeting of the National People’s Congress, the country’s highest legislative body, in which measures such as an increase in defense spending, the pursuit of unification with Taiwan, or adherence to an “independent” foreign policy have been agreed.
The Chinese government has announced that its defense spending will grow 7.2% this 2023, the fastest pace since 2019, amid rising tensions in Taiwan and with the United States.
According to the Chinese Ministry of Finance, a report picked up by ‘Global Times’, military spending is expected to increase by ¥1.5 trillion (US$223 billion).
“Governments at all levels should firmly support the development of national defense and the Armed Forces and carry out comprehensive activities to promote mutual support between the civilian sectors and the military,” Premier Li Keqiang said during his speech at the legislative session.
The defense spending announcement comes after Chinese President Xi Jinping announced to build a “world-class force” by 2027.
Moreover, it comes at a time when tensions between Washington and Beijing are rising, mainly due to US support for the island of Taiwan and the recent collapse of the alleged spy balloon over US territory.
The Chinese executive has called for advancing the reunification process with Taiwan by implementing the one-China principle and “taking firm steps to oppose Taiwan independence”, as reported by ‘South China Morning Post’.
With information from LGI