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China resolutely prioritises defence in 2023 budget

7th March 2023 - 02:50 GMT | by Gordon Arthur in Christchurch


China’s expenditure on defence will grow 7.2% this year, to a record $225 billion. (Photo: Gordon Arthur)

Even though China's economy is facing dire challenges, there is no let-up in funding being allocated to the PLA.

On 5 March, the opening day of the first annual session of the 14th National People’s Congress, China announced its defence budget for 2023. This allocation has risen 7.2% to CNY1.5537 trillion ($224.59 billion).

This amount confirms that the defence budget is continuing a rebound after a ‘mere’ 6.6% increase in 2020 as COVID-19 impacted the economy.

In fact, the increase of 7.2% is the largest percentage growth in the past four years. Last year, the budget rose 7.1% to CNY1.45045 trillion, whereas in 2021, defence spending grew 6.8%.

The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) is not enjoying the double-digit

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Gordon Arthur


Gordon Arthur

Gordon Arthur was the Asia Pacific editor for Shephard Media. Born in Scotland and educated …

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