Oct 10, 2013

    PLA able to raid Taiwan 'by 2020'

    CHINA will be able to invade Taiwan successfully by 2020, as it gains military strength and develops technology to prevent allies, such as the United States, from coming to the island's aid, the Taiwanese defence ministry said.

    A military-modernisation campaign has seen China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) enhance its ability to make long-range precision strikes and deny other ships access to the area, the ministry said in its 2013 National Defence Report. China's defence budget has more than doubled since 2006.

    "As the PLA continues to grow and build its anti-access/area-denial strategy proactively, and as it develops long-range precision-strike weaponry and extends its overseas power-projection capability, it will become a serious threat to the security of our nation," the report said.

    The PLA is already able to seal off Taiwan's main island and occupy outlying islands, according to the report.

    The ministry's assessment underscores China's growing military might in a region where it has pressed its territorial claims more aggressively in disputes with Japan, the Philippines and Vietnam.

    The report, released on Tuesday, comes despite China and the island it considers a breakaway province deepening economic ties.

    Chinese President Xi Jinping signalled that he wants a political resolution, saying at a regional summit this month that the two sides can't hand their problems "down from generation to generation".