China increases defence budget by 7.2% for 2024.
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Pranav Mathur, Pune

As the tension over Taiwan and the South China Sea amplifies, China announced that it would be increasing it’s defence spending in 2024. The decision to have a 7.2 % increase in the budget for the defence, similar to the last two years, took place at the start of the annual meeting of National Congress Party (NPC), the nation’s parliament. 

According to the budget report that was released showcasing the spending plans of the country, China will be spending more than 230 billion dollars. China has built up the second largest defence budget in the world, following the United States of America, even though the personnel in the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) is greater than that of the US Military. Even then, China’s spendings on the military is around three times less than that of the United States. 

This consistent increase in the budget of China’s military spendings will have complicated consequences to other countries, including India. While the Chinese spendings much  lower than that of the United States’ budget for the military, it is also three times more than India’s. 

In 2027, the PLA will complete 100 years of being in action and according to US Indo-Pacific command assessment, that is also the year that President Xi Jinping will put his focus on taking over Taiwan and include it in the mainland of China through military force. 

The PLA is also expected to increase pressure in the maritime field by supplying eight yuan class diesel submarines to Pakistan, over and above the basic combatants like destroyers and frigates, while also being in a four year long standoff with India on the East Ladakh Line of Actual Control. 

India is not part of any military alliance like AUKUS in the Indo-pacific region and QUAD being a little safe near Japan, New Delhi is in dire need to make its maritime forces stronger and make the presence felt, in order to have a counter to the challenges that the Chinese presence imposes on us in the region.