China can match the United States or even bypass them in terms of naval capabilities, if current trends in this area do not change, writes the National Interest magazine, citing a report from the US congressional research service.
According to the publication, the Chinese Navy has been continuously modernizing for 25 years, as a result of which it is now able to conduct large-scale operations not only in the coastal areas of China but also in remote regions, including the Western Pacific and the Indian ocean.
This, according to a congressional research service report released earlier this month, presents a challenge to the US Navy’s ability to establish “wartime control” over the high seas waters of the Western Pacific. According to the publication, this is the first such challenge that the US Navy faces since the end of the cold war. It is noted that “China’s efforts to modernize the fleet significantly reduced the advantage of the United States.”
The congressional research service report notes the need for Congress to make decisions on some issues – including whether the US Navy is responding correctly to China’s efforts to modernize its fleet. Also, the question is raised about whether the US Navy should move to a “more distributed fleet architecture.”
“Simply put, the report warns that if current trends in US and Chinese naval capabilities do not change, China may end up matching or surpassing the United States in overall naval capabilities,” the National Interest article said.