21 March 2013
China Naval Modernization: Implications for US Navy Capabilities
Background and Issues for Congress
This report focuses on the potential implications of China’s naval modernization for future required US Navy capabilities. The question of how the United States should respond to China’s military modernization effort, including its naval modernization effort, has emerged as a key issue in US defense planning. Admiral Michael Mullen, the Chairman of the Joints Chiefs of Staff, stated in June 2010 that “I have moved from being curious to being genuinely concerned” about China’s military programs. The question of how the United States should respond to China’s military modernization effort is of particular importance to the US Navy, because many US military programs for countering improved Chinese military forces would fall within the Navy’s budget.