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China plans more carriers as it extends naval influence and anticipates conflicts in the region

Wednesday, April 24th 2013 - 23:20 UTC
Full article 18 comments

China unveiled plans to build more aircraft carriers after commissioning its first last year, as the country extends its influence amid territorial disputes with neighbours including Japan and Vietnam. China already has the world’s second-biggest military budget after the US. Read full article


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  • briton

    The latest reports have the Asian military spending, is now more than the EU
    Including Britain,
    China and Russia are re-building
    Britain and the European nations are slowly disarming
    [i.e. spending less and less]

    We will reap what we sow,
    Out of Europe before the Russians get itchy feet.
    Justa thought..


    Apr 25th, 2013 - 12:18 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Chicureo

    Yes, I doubt that Russia itself will project force past it's former USSR borders, but they are rearming. China is a bit worry some as you now see that even the Indian border conflict has reappeared and there is no doubt about them projecting into the Pacific...

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 12:42 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Anglotino

    @1 Briton

    I wouldn't worry about Russia. It's economy is built on high oil prices and the limitations of that system are already being felt. Also with a declining population (short term growth from immigration and a few extra babies can't hide he long term trend) there is little to worry about from Russia. It is the mischief making that will be the biggest problem.

    As for China, it is not surprising it feels the need to beef up its navy. It has pretty much alienated every maritime neighbour it has because none of them can seem to bow before China's pretensions of historical greatness.

    Let's face it, China doesn't trust a single country that borders it.

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 01:05 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Britworker

    Why are we not taking advantage of this and selling our subs to China's UK friendly neighbours?

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 06:33 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Conqueror

    Some things to look at. As designed, as the Russian Varyag, this carrier appears to be of comparable size to the new Queen Elizabeth class carriers. BUT, it only has one-third the range. It requires a much larger complement. It has taken 14 years to get it into service. Only now has ”the carrier’s crew () mastered the ship’s weapons systems”. Even its intended combat aircraft, the Shenyang J-15, is not ready for full deployment. Only 16 have been built. It's just not that good.

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 10:37 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Audi Consilium

    5 Conqueror (#)

    Clearly this puts the matter into a more reasoned perspective. Thanks for the info/update.

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 10:54 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Brazilian

    Obivously the tides of world power are shifting...

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 12:28 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Captain Poppy

    Conqueror, you seem to know your military eqiupment. How would you say it compares it the Carl Vinson, Carl C. Stennis or the new Ford class carrier?
    That swoped up deck looks hideous, must be great in head seas.

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 02:55 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Anbar

    Well the bit rather obviously missed is crew-training and naval-aviation experience of which China has.... zero.

    Absolutely none.

    Nada. Zilch, rien....

    You cans tick great aircraft on it with great IT & systems but if your crew is green, with no experience at any officer level of anything to do with a carrier - then you're asking for trouble at every single decision tree/branch.

    A recent mil-tech report i was perusing reckoned that it will take China around 20 years of active maritime air-operations before it can maintain and run a carrier with its birds at a fully competent level - and that assumes a level of training TIME comparable to the USA.

    You cannot just stick some sailors and a few planes on a big boat and say “Look! We've got an aircraft carrier!”.

    Having said that: the Varyag is OK in its intended role which is NOT that of a primary aircraft carrier: it was designed to be a beefed-up escort carrier for other surface ships NOT as a primary carrier in a carrier group (like the USA carriers or the new brit QEs)

    As such the only real way to look at this ship is as the Chinese are really using it: it is a training ship for them to slowly build up experience of running a carrier.... for flight-ops training, for practice landings, take-offs, disaster damage/control ops - all the things they have absolutely no experiences of whatsoever (to which they admit themselves).

    By the time this “carrier” is totally redundant they MIGHT be classified as now being competent in carrier-ops.... so call it 20 years.

    Might they then have more carriers than the USA? maybe.... but remember that atm the USA has more carriers than every other nation in the world put together - with some to spare, and thats not including the “flat tops” that they dont classify as carriers that most other nations do.

    So, short version: its a training ship.

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 05:44 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Britworker

    Brazilian, you are so right.

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 06:03 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Captain Poppy

    Those other flat tops we don't classify as a flattop are the Amphibious assault ships, bascially helo flap tops. Flight operations is one of the most tense and dangerous operations in the Navy. That's with a highly trained, experienced and dedicated crew.
    The new Ford class......over 100,000 ton and a top speed in excess of 35 knots.
    It's funny, like these SA nations talking about their subs. It will take the decades before they will be considered a silent threat.
    11 carrier strike forces and three in the works.

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 06:05 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Anbar

    ..but.. about 4 of the USA carriers are on... what is it called .. “Zombie row” atm...?

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 06:24 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Captain Poppy

    The Kenndey has, Eisenhower are in the sights. The Nimitz is the next older and still has steel balls.....but will be next. The Roosevelt is being retooled, but not decommissioned. There is the Bush (#41), Lincoln, Stennis, Vinson, the Reagan, The Washington, The Truman. I guess we are dwindling. 10 active adn three in the works. The new class is the Ford, with a new Kenndey and a new Enterprise. This will be our 6th Enterprise. Of the hree new ones, there are replacing two active ones and the thrid is an addition.

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 06:43 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • briton

    We hear the American are having some trouble with maintaining a full set of carriers, and would welcome the two new British carriers to help out where feasible,

    Most sites mention the American carriers but little support for the Indian carrier [Hermes] as out dated
    The china carrier as a bit of an oddball mystery and the Russian carrier as conquer as stated.

    So the British carriers would make the Americans and British the only nations with carrier projected powers,

    I don’t know what all your opinions are on this.

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 07:07 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Captain Poppy

    I have not heard but would not be surprised. We'd always welcome The Brits. There are several contries with carriers, most of them quite aged. Yes I know that the Chinese carrier was a Russian moth balled carrier.

    It's no surprise to China's amtitions. Once they opened the door to market economies and started creating wealth outside of just the political privledged, it was obvious what was needed. A blue water navy and a strong military to protect there interests. Every country that becomes an economic powerhouse will always be subject to hostilites, China relaizes that. However I think it still remains to be seen whether they can be an effective powerhouse. You can have all the market orientated businesses you want in China, but without political reforms, it means diddly squat.
    China became a powerhouse because the free market businesses saw it as an undeveloped nation with cheaper labor and less regulation. That has certainly changed. Global businesses are fleeing China and now heading back to the USA, Europe, but primarily Malaysia and Thailand. It remains to be seen is they can stop bleeding. SOme do not understand the undeveloped economies can see double digit growths were a developed nation can not.
    But, I think that is why the Chinese are building the military, including space. Not sure I would want to be a Chinese astronaut though.

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 07:38 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Zethee

    “Might they then have more carriers than the USA? maybe.... but remember that atm the USA has more carriers than every other nation in the world put together - with some to spare, and thats not including the “flat tops” that they dont classify as carriers that most other nations do.”

    This is completely correct. The US does not class them as aircraft carriers. But they are in effect the same as our last/current carriers.

    The actual number of aircraft carriers the USA has is more like 25.

    China is very, very, very far behind.

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 08:48 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Captain Poppy

    Between the USA and Britain, I doubt their is any other country that will come close to the class and standard of naval aviators for some time to come.

    Apr 25th, 2013 - 11:03 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • briton

    very true,
    very true.

    Apr 26th, 2013 - 06:11 pm - Link - Report abuse 0

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