China has introduced its third aircraft carrier, the Fujian

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China on Friday unveiled its largest and most sophisticated aircraft carrier, the first domestically designed and built, according to state broadcaster CCTV, a sign of the country’s expanding military strength.

Authorities unveiled the 003 Type Warship during a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Jiangnan Shipyard in Shanghai. Fujian – according to officials quoted in state media as not ready for war for five years – is an important milestone in Beijing’s ambitions to build a “blue water” navy.

The carrier has been the center of intense interest among military observers and rivals overseeing the growth of China‚Äôs navy. China’s first two carriers include the old Soviet model Liaoning, purchased from Ukraine in 1998 and the Shandong built in China but launched in 2019 based on the Liaoning model.

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It was the first Chinese carrier to be fitted with an electromagnetic catapult to launch an aircraft, with a heavier payload, faster and more efficient. Technology pours the “sky jump” structure for launching jets through a slope at the end of the runway used by two other carriers in China.

S. in Singapore. Colin Coe, an expert in the People’s Liberation Army Navy at the Rajaratnam School of International Studies, says:

Although Chinese military analysts and blogs hail the carrier as “China’s response to the USS Gerald R. Ford” launched in 2017, many of its capabilities are still unknown. Ford was the largest and most advanced carrier in the world when it was built.

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“In Fujian and in that case, very little information is leaked into the PLA Navy’s career program. The precision capabilities and their effectiveness are kept very secret,” Ko said of the People’s Liberation Army.

China’s third aircraft carrier takes shape with ambition to challenge US naval supremacy

China’s most advanced carrier was launched amid mounting tensions in the Taiwan Strait and the South China Sea, where China and its neighbors have competing regional claims. The defense agreement between China and the Solomon Islands was recently signed and released A naval facility in Cambodia Further concerns have been raised about Beijing’s access to the Gulf of Thailand and the South Pacific.

The carrier was named in memory of the Chinese province facing Taiwan.

Lyric Li in Seoul and Vic Chiang in Taipei contributed to the report.

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