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China Daily / 2020-05 / 23 / Page005

It's simply a defense budget, period

China Daily | Updated: 2020-05-23 00:00

In stark contrast to the global perception that China is beefing up its defense budget, the country has been steadily slowing the pace of defense spending in recent years. And this year's draft budget report, issued at the opening of the top legislature's annual session on Friday, shows China has lowered the defense budget growth to 6.6 percent.

The proposed defense budget of 1.27 trillion yuan ($178 billion) signifies a single-digit growth for the fifth consecutive year and the lowest growth rate in recent years. Even those who never let go of a single opportunity to raise hell every year when China approves its military spending cannot deny the country's commitment to moderating the growth rate of its defense budget.

It is a measure of this commitment that China, for many years, has kept the proportion of its defense spending around 1.3 percent of its GDP-half of the world average of 2.6 percent. In recent years, it has maintained a moderate and restrained rate of increase, which is compatible with the country's economic growth and rising demand for national defense.

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