The Pentagon said in a new report Tuesday that China plans to double its current stockpile of nuclear warheads over the next decade, estimating that Beijing currently has about 200 warheads in its arsenal.
The annual congressional report indicated that the Chinese People’s Liberation Army is the largest existing land force in the world, while Beijing’s navy is the largest naval force, and it has a strong ability to build reserve ships.
China also surpasses the United States in ground-based cruise missiles.
The Pentagon report said that China aims to increase its power as a great power and sees itself in competition with the United States.
He explained that the Chinese ruling party aims to continue modernizing its army, so that it becomes “a practical tool in government with an active role in pushing… foreign policy”.
The US Department of Defense said that China had begun to use the military to project its power beyond its borders.
The US claim regarding China’s current nuclear capacity comes as the Trump administration is increasingly turning away from the Cold War dynamic of bilateral nuclear arms deals with Russia and seeking to include China in any agreements on arms restrictions.