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As the economy struggles, China strengthens its defenses

China (Via Paul Rosenberg/Getty Images)

China is increasing its defense budget and talking more strongly about Taiwan. It also wants to boost its economy. This year, it will raise its military spending by 7.2%, making its military budget more than double what it was when Xi Jinping became president 11 years ago.

The announcement happened during the National People’s Congress, where they also officially changed their language about Taiwan. All of this is happening while China’s economy is struggling. The increase in defense spending is higher than what the government expected for economic growth this year, which they targeted at 5%.

The Financial Times said that not even a budget deficit of 3% of the GDP will stop Beijing from increasing defense spending.

Handguns (Via Max Smith/Shutterstock)

China’s military budget has more than doubled under President Xi Jinping, but it’s still less than what the US spends on defense.

China has also been involved in more regional disputes. President Xi Jinping has promised to make China’s military a top force by 2027, regardless of how the economy is doing.

CNN mentioned that China’s economy is facing many challenges like problems in the property sector, deflation, foreign capital leaving, a weak stock market, and a low birth rate. Some experts say hitting the 5% economic growth target is ambitious but possible.

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