China: March 8, 2002

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China is increasing it's military budget another 17.6 percent in 2002 and expects to maintain annual increases of about 15 percent through 2005. The 2002 defense spending will be $20 billion, which will reach $30 billion by 2005. This would still be less than ten percent of the U.S. defense budget. A lot of the additional spending is going into more modern weapons (often bought from Russia.) The government spending deficit in 2001 was $37 billion. The current legislative session (a rubber stamp operation, but an occasion for the leadership to make major announcements) admitted that corruption among Communist part officials was a serious problem. If corruption is not reduced, it was pointed out, chaos could follow. Any student of Chinese history would recognize the truth in that. 

 

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