The US Department of Defense report, released Tuesday, suggests that China is likely to build more bases abroad after installing the facility in Djibouti in Africa. Pakistan is also considered a possible location for the future Chinese military base.
The prediction came in the form of a 97-page annual report for the US Congress that saw the progress of the Chinese military in 2016, which is funded by robust defense spending that the Pentagon estimates in more than 180 Billion dollars.
This is more than the official figure of China’s defense budget ($ 140.4 billion). It seems that Chinese leaders are aimed at increasing military spending on a “predictable future”, even at a time when economic growth is slowing, the US report says. The Chinese military successes, including in outer space and at sea, were noted.
The report repeatedly cites the construction of China’s first foreign naval base in Djibouti, which is already home to the key US military base and is strategically located near the southern entrance to the Red Sea on Way to the Suez Canal.
“China will most likely seek to create additional military bases in countries with which it has long-standing friendly relations and similar strategic interests such as Pakistan,” the report says. .
But Pakistan, according to the US report, was already the primary market in the Asia-Pacific region for the export of Chinese weapons (2011-2015). Last year, China signed an agreement with Pakistan on the sale of eight submarines.
China’s Ministry of Defense expressed “strong denial” of the content of the report, saying that this is a bloated theory of the Chinese threat. China is on the path of peaceful development, and its defense spending is “open and transparent,” the statement said.
“Criticism in the US report is a pure hypothesis. We hope that the US can rationally and objectively consider China’s national defense and military construction. ”
On a daily news briefing, the Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying rejected the comment on Pakistani bases as a “hypothesis” and refused to provide a specific answer. & Nbsp; China and Pakistan enjoy friendly cooperation relations that Are not aimed at any third parties, she added.