TAIPEI – Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen stated on Monday (Aug 6) she is looking for to ramp up spending on the armed forces, as relations with China deteriorate.
Her proposal to extend the 2019 defence price range by 5.6 per cent to Tw$346 billion (S$15.5 billion) will go earlier than Parliament following the summer time recess.
Beijing sees democratic self-ruling Taiwan as a part of its territory to be introduced again into its fold, by power if essential.
China has stepped up stress on Taiwan since Tsai got here to energy two years in the past, as her authorities refuses to acknowledge the island is a part of “one China”.
It has staged a string of air and naval workout routines, together with a live-fire drill within the Taiwan Strait in April, which Chinese language officers stated had been aimed toward Taiwan’s “independence forces”.
“There have been many modifications in worldwide and regional conditions and our nationwide safety is confronted with extra apparent and sophisticated threats,” Tsai stated Monday as she attended a naval ceremony and introduced the defence spending plan.
Up Tw$18.three billion from the earlier yr, it will account for two.16 per cent of the GDP.
The 2018 defence price range was solely up 1.9 per cent on the yr earlier than, at Tw$327.7 billion.
Round a fifth of the 2019 price range can be spent on “defence self-sufficiency” tasks, Tsai stated.
Taiwan needs to beef up its homegrown defence techniques, notably its submarines.
The US authorities this yr authorised a licence required to promote submarine know-how to Taiwan, a part of warming relations between the 2 sides.
Though the US doesn’t have official diplomatic relations with Taipei after switching recognition to Beijing in 1979, it stays Taiwan’s strongest ally and arms provider.
An extended-stalled supply authorised by then US president George W Bush in 2001 to produce eight typical submarines has by no means come to fruition.
Final yr, Taiwan additionally introduced its bid to create a brand new era of domestically constructed jet trainers by 2026.
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