China raises military spending by 18%

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Queso, Mar 4, 2008.

  1. Queso macrumors G4

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    #1
    BBC News

    I have to say the only thing that surprised me here is how low the figure currently is considering the size of China. The UK spends more than that. However, obviously with China being a single-party dictatorship I can understand neighbouring countries being more than a little concerned with such a sudden increase in spend, especially the "renegade province" of Taipei/Taiwan.

    Anything to be worried about? Or just China making use of its GDP increase to modernise its military?
     
  2. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #2
    Well, you have to consider PPP as well. Britain also pays its soldiers a lot more than China does.

    China is a future superpower, or at least that's the current narrative. Why shouldn't they have the military to match their economic might?
     
  3. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

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    #3
    Are they fracking kidding? What government does tell anyone else what they're spending they're money on!?

    The US has got some balls criticising anyone else's military spending :rolleyes:
     
  4. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #4
    You've got a point, but I think you're making it too strongly. I bet you can't find this much information on a Chinese government website:

    http://www.defenselink.mil/comptroller/defbudget/fy2008/index.html#
     
  5. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

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    #5
    I'm sure the US gvt are open about many of the ways they spend their, what is it, $500bn "security" budget. To a large extent they like to have everyone know about all the uber-cool-kick-ass-shizzles they're building. It's all the other stuff that's even more crazy that they don't tell anyone about I'm referring too.

    How long were the stealth fighters/bombers flying in and out of Area 51 for before anyone had a clue where the countless billions were being poured in to?
     
  6. iBlue macrumors Core

    iBlue

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    #6
    It seems they're making their increasingly formidable presence known more and more these days. It is slightly worrying, I have to say.
     
  7. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #7
    As long as Peking continues to make incredible duck dishes, I don't care. They can increase military spending if they want. I find it particularly funny that the US criticized China.
     
  8. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #8
    the US critizising other countries for the defense budgets ? yeah right

    even if the 60 billion number is twice as high it is still less than 1/3 of the US official budget not counting the extra iraq and afghanistan expenses

    and the 18% icnrease is nothing comapred to the US increase after 11/9 ....

    and moblithe: UK migth be paying a lot more to their soldiers ... but in the end the absolute number is still comaprable and that's what it's all about
     
  9. MacBoobsPro macrumors 603

    MacBoobsPro

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    #9
    One B2 bomber = $1.1billion. Something to think about. :D
     
  10. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #10
    So is China another one of those countries who we should never be concerned about no matter what they do?
     
  11. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

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    #11
    Who said that?
     
  12. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #12
    Several posts strongly intimated that China's military buildup is of no real consequence. Is that the question you are asking?
     
  13. Queso thread starter macrumors G4

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    #13
    Not at all. Right now I'm not quite sure how I feel about this, which is why I started the thread. It could be argued that with rising wage costs and inflation in China the 18% is actually just maintaining current levels, but with the Chinese economy still in overdrive it does seem unlikely that they wouldn't use the extra tax cash to flex some military muscle at some point.
     
  14. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

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    #14
    They're a huge global power with an apparently incredibly low military spend, even doubling this it still doesn't come to that much. Other nations (whoever they may be) bitching about them not being open enough about how they spend money on defence is ridiculous. Every nation is out for itself and is selectively secretive, why should they be any different?
     
  15. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #15
    I don't think we should be happy about any major nation substantially building up its military capacity. China has at least doubled its military spending over the last ten years. That's a lot by any reckoning. Questions deserve to be asked about why they believe this to be necessary. Their intentions toward Taiwan are the most immediate concern.

    I think your question answers itself. Nations, looking after their own interests, constantly raise questions about the intentions of other nations. It's not ridiculous when one country tends to its own interests and completely understandable when another does the same thing.
     
  16. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #16
    What? They have the second largest military budget in the world (or 4th ostensibly)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_and_federations_by_military_expenditures

    They also have the second largest number of military aircraft (behind the US), second largest number of tanks (behind Russia), second largest number of submarines (behind the US)... They;ve roughly doubled the number of destroyers in their navy in the last 15 years and are expected to build and aircraft carrier in the next 5-10 years.

    A bit of trivia, how many counties in the world have aircraft carriers?

    Answer, nine countries, 20 carriers, the US has 11 of them... all the US carriers are "supercarriers."
     
  17. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #17
    and they happen to have by accident the largest population .. so why exactly the whining about their defense spending who per capita is still not even close to european standards (the us has a 1/4 of the population and still a defense budget 4 times as big even when you double the chinese budget .. that makes the US budget 16-32x as big per capita ...)

    and many of those submarines, tanks and planes are old and are currently replaced so of course a lot of money has to be invested

    america easily increased it's defense budget by way more than 18% over the last years and even more so in total sum so why should i be afraid of the chinese who haven't had that many wars like the US did during my lifetime

    if austria increases it's budget by 25% for 4 years because they buy a whooping _16_ planes for replacing the planes bought during the 70 ties nobody is going to cry about how serious that is international (except in austria where people complain if their army buys medical equipment and mine proven vehicles)
     
  18. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #18
    Not at all. It's worrying on a number of levels. I'm certainly not disputing that.

    But who are we to criticize? After the past 7 years of increased military spending - much of it off the books - and a black ops budget bigger than some nations GDP, what moral authority do we have to suggest that another soverign nation not do what we ourselves have done. Not to mention trumpeted loudly to the world that no nation has the right to tell us what to do.

    Other nations see that to mean that they get to play be the same rules.

    I suppose the question that needs to be asked then, is what kind of policy should the US adopt if the goal is to get China to lessen their defense spending and be more transparent in their defense spending overall? Will threatening Chinese interests provide that result? Will building up our military even more provide that result? Do we want to reach some sort of MAD parity with the Chinese?

    Like all nations, and particularly with great powers, the Chinese want to be able to defend themselves against any aggressor; which is indeed the right of any nation. From the Chinese perspective, the US has spent considerable time now stating that self-defense is a right nations have, and that self-defense includes things like pre-emptive strikes and first-strike nuclear war.

    We shouldn't be surprised when those kinds of statments come back to haunt us.

    This is more than just a question of whether we are concerned about the threat posed by a Chinese military buildup. It includes questions about our own policies, and actions taken in the name of those policies; and how that affects the decisions of other nations.
     
  19. Much Ado macrumors 68000

    Much Ado

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    #19
    Does China have a right to increase its military spending? Yes.

    Does that stop me from being worried? No.
     
  20. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #20
    I'm not sure I understand this argument. I don't believe there's any question but that China is steadily increasing its military capabilities. Is it wrong to ask why, or what the implications may be?
     
  21. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #21
    well the smaller a military budget the more even bringing one part to new 2008 standards can be quite expensive especially if you have a big army to begin with ... new equipment isn't cheap after all

    how much in total is this 18% increase?
    9 billion dollars ?

    the overall costs of the 16-18 eurofighter typhoon austria is buying is 1.5 billions....except that is euros _without_ operation costs (translates to 2.2 billion dollars)
    and our eurofighters got strapped of IFF scanners, night vision, infrared and radar libraries and what else
    and only sidewinders + 30 mm guns capabilities ... which aren't included anyway... in the price

    so let'S say the new chinese planes have price lower than that so they might get 25 planes for the same price (even though they develop them themselves as well .. but they also buy more weapons for them as well...)
    so they can buy perhaps 100 new planes for that money ? ... wow terrific

    a new conventional submarine like the u212 (best conventional short range hunting submarine out there) is costing around 750 million dollars ... without development + operational cost

    so even then if you factor in the new equipment needed across all branches not that much is left over for each branch of the chinese army

    also how much have operational costs increased because of fuel prices .. with a tank + air force the size of china has this can easily mean hundreds of millions a year more
     
  22. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #22
    Of China's 117 subs in 1985, no more than 17 are still in service, meaning that they've built 45+ new subs in the past 22 years. Of their 15 destroyers in 1985, no more than 11 remain, meaning at least 16 new destroyers built in that time.

    http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/china/navy.htm

    They've updated a lot of their planes too:

    http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/china/plaaf-equip.htm

    As for the US, am I arguing that what the US does is OK? I don't disagree that the US is hypocritical.
     
  23. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #23
    Not hypocritical so much as self-interested.
     
  24. Queso thread starter macrumors G4

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    #24
    As, it has to be said, are all nations.
     
  25. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    #25
    Well yes, and as a general issue I would rank China near the top of the list of countries with the potential to create serious mischief in the world, so I think it's well worth considering what they are doing and asking why they are doing it.
     

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