China is stepping up its efforts to develop new weaponry ranging from guns to fighter jets to challenge US dominance, according to Chinese military officials.
The effort is in line with Beijing’s drive to modernise its military and improve combat readiness as the armed forces prepare for a high-profile show of strength later this year in a parade to mark the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic.
“We are now more focused on boosting indigenous research and development capabilities in all possible ways, especially precision,” Huang Xueying, a member of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference said on the sidelines of the legislative gathering in Beijing.
“Although Chinese guns have improved materials, lifespans and reliability, China lacks the processing capability that can produce high-quality guns,” said Huang, a firearms specialist with the People’s Liberation Army.China is also working to improve the engines of its fighter planes as it seeks to develop stealth aircraft that can compete with the best in the world.
“The air force mainly copied other countries’ warplanes in the past, because we relied too much on foreign technology, but now we are putting more effort into research and development,” said Tang Changhong, another CPPCC member and the chief designer of the Y-20, a large military transport aircraft.