Dmitri June 5th, 2007
As two rising Asian powers with high GDP growths and increasing geo-political influence, India and China have been arch rivals in their race to superpowerdom. The race for regional dominance between these two countries has also spawned a race for militarisation, with India sparing no efforts to match China’s military might. A comparative analysis is therefore overdue, to see how India and China fare against each other in their military strengths.
According to United States DoD (Department of Defense) reports for 2006, China’s military expenditure is estimated to be 80 billion US dollars. However, the official Chinese CPC government quote is a $30 billion military expenditure (which a lot of analysts believe is underquoted). The actual Chinese military capabilities and budget are shrouded in deep secrecy to prevent foreign countries having an idea of its military might…and perhaps to create the strategic advantage of uncertainity. If we were to go by the conservative official Chinese figure of $30 billion, it would put China second only to USA in global military spending. On the other side, India’s official military expenditure for 2006 is quoted at $22 billion by the Ministry of Finance (India) Budget (2006-2007). India however, does not keep a level of secrecy as cloaked as China does, as its democratic government system requires public accountability. By its official 2006 military budget figures, India stands at 9th position in global military spending.
In 2006 India’s active military personell numbered over 1,325,000 while China was significantly higher at 2,255,000. In air defence, China’s PLA (People’s Liberation Army) Air Force has 9,218 aircrafts of which about 2300 are combat aircrafts, operating from its 489+ air bases. The Indian Air Force has 3382 aircrafts which includes 1335 combat aircrafts operating from 334+ bases and its sole aircraft carrier INS Viraat. The... [continues]
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