Janes reporting on China


An overview of Janes reporting on China

Janes provides a wide range of data, insight and news across global defence and security. Here you will find a summary and curation of the most recent content around China derived from Janes connected intelligence solutions.

Recent focuses include the latest territorial claims in the South China Sea, details of a new assault rifle in service with PLA units, troops in Tibet deploying UAVs for logistics support and more.

Region of Focus – South China Sea:

China Expands Territorial Claims in South China Sea 

2 Sep: China’s pursuit of sovereignty claims along its periphery has led to an exacerbation of tensions with its neighbours. Janes Analysis - “Janes has identified a three-step process of historical and territorial revisionism that China appears to deploy in pursuit of its claims over contested territory.” 

Tsai refers to growing PLA activities near Taiwan as ‘a threat of force’

22 Sep: Amid increasing tensions between Beijing and Taipei, Taiwan’s President, Tsai Ing-wen, has referred to the growing Chinese military activity near the island as constituting “a threat of force”. Janes Analysis – “The latest developments come as the US Department of Defense (DoD) confirmed in its 2020 report to Congress on military and security developments involving China that Taiwan is developing new concepts and capabilities for asymmetric warfare to counter the growing capabilities of the PLA.” 

Technology Developments:

New assault rifle also in service with PLA airborne units

18 Sep: A new assault rifle first unveiled by the People’s Liberation Army Ground Force (PLAGF) during the 1 October 2019 military parade in Beijing is also in service with at least some units of the PLA Air Force (PLAAF) Airborne Corps. Janes Analysis – “…it will undoubtedly take many years for the PLAGF to be re-equipped with the new QBZ-series rifles. Provided that such endeavour is undertaken and the new QBZ is adopted into service across the force, the PLA will, after a quarter of a century of bullpup rifle use, join the world’s other two major military powers, namely the United States (notwithstanding the current next-generation squad weapon competition) and Russia, both of which remain committed to this day to their extant conventional layout assault rifle designs.”

New Type 05-based amphibious reconnaissance vehicle in PLA service

21 Sep: Chinese state-owned television has released footage showing what appears to be a new amphibious armoured reconnaissance vehicle operated by the People’s Liberation Army Ground Force’s (PLAGF’s) 74th Group Army. Janes Analysis – “The reconnaissance variant of the Type 05 family appears to have been fitted with some of the same equipment found on both the reconnaissance variant of the Type 09 8×8 AFV family, and on the tracked Type 89 derivative, the latter of which is used to support formations equipped with the ZBD-04A infantry fighting vehicle. It is understood that all three vehicles are capable of co-ordinating artillery and air assets to engage ground targets on behalf of a battalion or brigade.” 

Domestic Affairs:

US highlights advancements made by China’s ‘reorganised’ defence industry

3 Sep: The US government has pointed to a “substantially reorganised” defence industrial base in China as supporting capability advancements in weapons development and production. Janes Analysis – “The emphasis on industrial restructuring during the 13th Five-Year Plan has seen, for example, major Chinese state-run defence corporations, which dominate the sector, divest assets to private firms as well as merge key enterprises to improve efficiencies.” 

PLA troops in Tibet deploying UAVs for logistics support

11 Sep: The Tibet Military District of China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) is using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to provide rapid logistical support to troops operating in areas that are either inaccessible by road or where the provision of supplies by road would be put at high risk by enemy forces. Janes Analysis – “Civil-military integration is one aspect of the PLA Joint Logistics Support Force's (JLSF) role, and it is intended to ensure that the PLAGF can get to where it needs, with what it needs, in a timely fashion. However, the JLSF is also charged with ensuring that the PLAGF has its own state-of-the-art logistics support system capable of achieving short-term or more limited goals without civil support.” 

International Affairs:

China now has world’s largest navy as Beijing advances towards goal of a ‘world-class’ military by 2049, says US DoD

2 Sep: China now has the largest navy in the world, an expansion driven by Beijing’s aspirations to “return” the country to a position of strength and leadership on the world stage, the US Department of Defense (DoD) said in its 2020 report on military and security developments involving China. Janes Analysis – “Past iterations of the Pentagon’s annual report to Congress on the Chinese military seem to have contained only minor amendments to the previous version. In contrast, the 2020 publication appears to be the product of a thorough revision, which is nearly 50% longer than the 2019 report, and contains more details.”

China’s Belt and Road drive falters amid Covid-19 pandemic

8 Sep: China’s Belt and Road Initiative has been severely impaired by the Covid-19 pandemic, but Beijing appears keen to keep building influence through the strategy. Janes Analysis – “Some countries may still receive significant investments, as political will on both sides overrides economic concerns, but three significant effects of Covid-19 are likely to combine to ensure lower levels of activity: first, a reduced demand in recipient countries for debt-financed investments amid greater economic stresses; second, an increase in debt renegotiations that undermines the desire for further debt in the developing world, while also reducing the capacity and appetite of Chinese lenders for further financing; and third, greater wariness in some countries, particularly US allies, of further engagement with Chinese investment projects.” 


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