November 19, 2014 10:44 am
The Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy is about to build 18 naval bases in various regions, in the next 10 years, including Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Mynanmar in the Northern, Western and Central South Indian Oceans, the Namibian reported.
The naval bases are: Chongjin Port (North Korea), Moresby Port (Papua New Guinea), Sihanoukville Port (Cambodia), Koh Lanta Port (Thailand) Sittwe Port (Myanmar), Dhaka Port (Bangladesh), Gwadar Port (Pakistan), Hambantota Port (Sri Lanka), Maldives, Seychelles, Djibouti Port (Djibouti).
“These three strategic lines will further enhance China’s effectiveness in taking responsibility for maintaining the safety of international maritime routes thereby maintaining regional and world stability,” the media reports said.
China plans to build replenishment, berthing and maintenance bases in foreign countries through mutually beneficial and friendly consultations. Furthermore, the reports state that the Chinese navy will not establish “US-style” military bases, yet it will not exclude the establishment of a number of so-called ‘Overseas Strategic Support Bases’ in accordance with prevailing international rules.
China has several major infrastructure development and resource extraction interests in Namibia. It also has a satellite tracking station near Swakopmund.
The decision for strengthening China’s national armed forces in line with the country’s international standing to meet the needs of its security and development interests, was taken at the Chinese Communist Party congress.
China’s navy boasts of a personnel strength of 255 000 servicemen and women, including 10 000 marines and 26 000 naval air force personnel. It is the second largest navy in the world in terms of tonnage, behind only the United States Navy, and has the largest number of major combatants of any navy.