As China pushes ahead with an ambitious defence modernisation programme, state media has reported that the country is looking at developing a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier. President Xi Jinping had in October pledged to turn the military into a ‘world class fighting force’ and has pushed for technological advancements.
The country’s largest shipbuilder, state-owned China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC) revealed a list of technological advancements for a military upgrade by 2025, reports state-run Global Times.
The announcement on CSIC’s website however seems to have been edited to remove any reference to nuclear-power ships, reports Reuters.
We must...speed up key breakthroughs such as the realisation of nuclear-powered aircraft carriers, new-style nuclear submarines, quiet submarines, and unmanned intelligent underwater defence systems.The announcement by CSIC.
CSIC earlier built the country’s first aircraft indigenous carrier that was launched last year and is expected to be inducted by the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) by 2020. China’s first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning was purchased second-hand from Ukraine in 1998 and retrofitted as per China’s requirements.
CSIC is also reportedly working on a third design that will use technology developed in-house by the company.
Not much is known about the aircraft carrier programme, regarded as one of China’s closely guarded state secrets.
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