China’s air force shows off its L15 Falcon trainer at the Zhuhai Air Show in 2022. The country has a deal to export the aircraft to the United Arab Emirates.
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BEIJING — China is set to increase defense spending this year by 7.2% to 1.56 trillion yuan ($230 billion), according to a draft released Sunday by the Ministry of Finance.
China’s defense budget grew by 7.1% last year to 1.45 trillion yuan, faster than the 6.8% increase in 2021 and 6.6% climb in 2020, according to official data.
In 2019, China’s defense spending rose by 7.5% to 1.19 trillion yuan.
In a separate report Sunday about government work, Premier Li Keqiang did not mention the Russia-Ukraine war. “We should stay committed to an independent foreign policy of peace,” the report said.
The work report called for “resolute steps to oppose ‘Taiwan independence'” while sticking to Beijing’s call for “peaceful reunification.”
Taiwan is a democratically ruled self-governed island that Beijing claims is part of its territory.