Military budget of the People's Republic of China


Military budget of the People's Republic of China
The military budget of the People's Republic of China in US$ billions.

The military budget of the People's Republic of China (PRC) is the portion of the overall budget of China that is allocated for the funding of the military of the People's Republic of China. This military budget finances employee salaries and training costs, the maintenance of equipment and facilities, support of new or ongoing operations, and development and procurement of new weapons, equipment, and vehicles. Every March, as part of its annual state budget, China releases a single overall figure for national military expenditures.[1]

The Chinese government's published 2011 military budget is about US$91.5 billion,[2] the second largest in the world and up about 12.7 % from 2010 (US$77.95 billion).[3] This figure would mean that for 2011, China's military expenditure as a percentage of GDP would be 1.4%.[4]

Contents

Unofficial estimates

Unofficial estimates place the total amount of military spending for the People's Republic of China higher than the Chinese government figures, but these calculations tend to differ between organizations.

In 2010, the US Department of Defense's annual report to Congress on China's military strength estimated the actual 2009 Chinese military spending at US$150 billion.[5] Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) estimates that the military spending of the People's Republic of China for 2009 was US$100 billion,[6] higher than the official budget, but lower than the US DoD estimate.

The last year that many international institutes provided estimates of Chinese military spending in comparable terms was 2003. In terms of the prevailing exchange rate, SIPRI, RAND, the CIA and the DIA estimated the budget to be between US$30–65 billion. In terms of purchasing power parity, or the relative purchasing strength of the expenditure, the SIPRI estimate was as high as US$140 billion.[7] The Chinese government's published budget at that time was less than US$25 billion.

A RAND Corporation study estimates the People's Republic of China's defense spending to be higher than the official number but lower than United States Department of Defense calculations. The defense spending of the People's Republic of China is estimated to be between 2.3-2.8% of China's GDP. This is 40-70% higher than official figures, but substantially lower than previous outside estimates. Nevertheless, Chinese military spending doubled between 1997 and 2003, nearly reaching the level of the United Kingdom and Japan, and it continued to grow over 10% annually during 2003-2005.[2] If the RAND study is correct, China could be the second highest spender by percentage of GDP[citation needed] among the countries in the tables below, surpassing Japan and Russia in absolute terms.

The International Institute for Strategic Studies in a 2011 report argued that if spending trends continue China will achieve military equality with the United States in 15-20 years.[8]

Comparison with other countries

Absolute expenditures in USD for 2004–2007
Country/Region Official budget DIA SIPRI[9] RAND[10] DoD[5]
United States $419.3 billion $475.3 billion $475.3 billion $419.3 billion[5]
United Kingdom $58.6 billion $47.4 billion $47.4 billion
Japan $45.8 billion $45.8 billion $42.4 billion
People's Republic of China (PRC)[11] $29.9 billion $90–130 billion $30.7 billion $42.0-51.0 billion $63.0 billion
Russia $14.5 billion $70.0 billion $19.4 billion $70.0 billion
Republic of China (Taiwan) $7.6 billion $7.7 billion
Relative expenditures as percentage of GDP
Country/Region Official budget SIPRI[12] RAND[10] DoD[5]
United States 3.6% 4.0% 3.6%[5]
Russia 2.8% 4.3% 12%
United Kingdom 2.7% 2.2%
Republic of China (Taiwan) 2.6% 2.2%
People's Republic of China (PRC)[11] 1.4% 1.8% 1.9-2.4% 1.2%
Japan 1.0% 1.0%
  • Note that this data have been adapted to the revision of China's 2004 GDP. This revision increased China's GDP number by 16.8%, or US$283 billion. These figures were issued by the Chinese National Bureau of Statistics following a survey that aimed to gather more accurate data. Service industries accounted for 93% of the revision.[13]
  • 2007 military budget is 350.92bn yuan, an increase of only 4.1 yuan per capita
  • Due to differences between the countries' budget systems, China categorizes the budget of the 2nd Artillery Corps as the budget of Space Development Rockets, and missile development is included in the Air Science budget. As a result, China and Russia's military budgets do not correspond to those of other countries. Actual military expenditure can be estimated by military equipment inventory. DIA re-estimated China's real military expenditure for 2007, and Pentagon reported to Congress that it will be between US$80–130 billion, at the same as the military spending for Japan, the United Kingdom, and France combined.

Real volume comparison

  • The following table exposes the effects of purchasing power parity by comparing the equipment that each country can afford with its budget. With the exception of the "troops" category, the data show only relatively modern and in-use material owned by each military, excluding stocks and obsolete hardware.
Type PRC Russia Japan US ROC N. Korea S. Korea
Combat aircraft 2,200 2,200 400->260 4,601 400 ~300 300
Tanks 8,000 21,000 900->600 ~7,000 900 3,000 2,000
Submarines 60 60 16 72 2 24 8
Tanks/Transportation 420 200(Pac50) 30 900(Pac450) - - 10
Troops (in thousands) 1600 400 165 650 220 1100 660

See also

References

External links


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