China’s Defense Industry and Arms Exports: A Study by Russian Military Experts*
The start of sea trials for China’s first aircraft carrier this August marked a new era in the capabilities of China’s military-industrial complex and is a testament to the astonishing progress made by the Chinese defense industry in just the last 10 years. Like its economy and infrastructure, China’s defense industry has experienced unprecedented growth, offering a more robust variety of products to both civilian and military customers.
China’s Defense Industry and Arms Exports: A Study by Russian Military Experts is an objective study of the developments and progress made by China’s defense industry over the last twenty years, including an in-depth analysis of China’s arms imports and exports. Written by Moscow’s prestigious Centre for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies, this book presents a highly detailed account of the major corporations that make up the current structure of China’s defense industry and a thorough survey of China’s activities on the international arms market. As a long-time exporter of arms and various defense technologies to China, Russia is in a unique position to evaluate the changes and developments that have taken place within the Chinese defense industry over the last few decades.
China’s Defense Industry and Arms Exports consists of three sections. The first section outlines China’s key defense corporations in all defense industry segments, the various government agencies that oversee these state-owned corporations and the activities of each corporation and their various subsidiaries. The section concludes with two case studies from China’s defense industry: military shipbuilding, where tremendous growth has occurred, and aircraft engine production, a segment in which China continues to struggle. Yet despite such struggles China’s advancements in both segments have been impressive and its capabilities only continue to improve.
In the second section, China’s arms imports and military and technical cooperation with various exporters are examined. Particular focus is paid to the import of Russian weapons and defense technology, as well as to China’s cooperation with Israel and Europe.
The third section of the bookfocuses on Chinese arms exports, specifically exports during the period from 1992-2010. Included in this section are detailed accounts of Chinese exports to such countries as Pakistan, Iran, Burma, Egypt, Sudan and North Korea, as well as to other Chinese defense customers and partners. The section closes with an exhaustive list of the weapons categories China offers to its foreign customers with detailed information on the various weapons series and systems.
As China’s Defense Industry and Arms Exports makes clear, the capabilities of China’s defense industry have grown substantially since the late 1990s. China’s arms imports have fallen sharply in the last five years while Chinese defense exports have more than doubled. Yet while China continues to focus on minimizing imports of finished weapons platforms, it still relies heavily on borrowing and adapting foreign designs and technology. However, given the pace of developments in China’s defense industry, it may not be long before the sophistication of the country’s weapons exports matches those of Russia and other major exporters. Already, China’s expansion into African and Latin American markets has put it on track to become one of the world’s leading arms exporters in just a matter of years. The extent to which China’s defense capabilities continue to grow remains to be seen, but it is clear that whatever trajectory China takes will have powerful implications not just for Russia and other major exporters, but for developing countries the world over.
China’s Defense Industry and Arms Exports: A Study by Russian Military Experts was compiled using numerous Russian, Chinese and American sources, and features a number of tables and an index.(Available in January 2012).
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* Makienko, Konstantin. Minneapolis, USA: East View Press, 2012. ISBN 978-1-879944-09-1.