The USA is spending about $155 billion ($90 billion on weapons procurement and $65 billion on weapons research and development. The US will likely grow military procurement spending moderately over the next ten years.
Both IISS and SIPRI estimates explicitly include the cost of foreign military procurement, military research and development, and paramilitary funding, while DOD estimates mention these categories but do not confirm the inclusion of these items in their estimates of Chinese military spending.
In early 2016, a high-ranking officer in the Chinese military stated that in general Chinese spending is “divided into about three equal parts made up of personnel expenses, activity expenses to pay for training and military exercises and expenses to purchase and repair weapons and other military equipment.
It seems like a reasonable estimate to use the SIPRI estimate and to divide by three to get to China’s military procurement and research.
Above- is that basic comparison of military procurement
* the US at $155 billion
* China at $70 billion
* Russia at $34 billion
China will probably grow defense spending by about 5-7% each year for the next ten years which will be about the level of GDP growth.
This would mean China will pass the USA in overall military spending around 2040-2045.
China is passing combined Western Europe military spending around 2020. Although some estimates indicate that this has already happened.
Economic projections get very uncertain beyond 2025.
It is likely that in 2025 the basic comparison of military procurement will shift to
* the US at $175 billion
* China at $105 billion
* Russia at $34 billion
China goes from double the Russia level to triple.
China goes from 45% of the US level to about 60%.
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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