Washington: China is continuing to modernise its armed forces in order to transform its military into a major global power and using espionage to steal cutting edge technology for military purposes, according to a new Pentagon report.
"China uses a variety of methods to acquire foreign military and dual-use technologies, including targeted foreign direct investment, cyber theft, and exploitation of private Chinese nationals' access to these technologies, as well as harnessing its intelligence services, computer intrusions, and other illicit approaches," the Congressionally-mandated Department of Defence report said on Thursday.
"China obtains foreign technology through imports, foreign direct investment, the establishment of foreign research and development (R&D) centres, joint ventures, research and academic partnerships, talent recruitment, and industrial and cyber-espionage."
The report said that China had used techniques to acquire sensitive, dual-use, or military-grade equipment from the US, including aviation and antisubmarine warfare technologies, CNN reported.
Beijing is also exploiting its citizens and foreigners of Chinese descent living abroad to further the aims of the Communist Party of China (CPC), it added.
Some of the more advanced technology China is developing includes hypersonic missiles, weapons that travel at least five-times the speed of sound.
"China has tested hypersonic glide vehicles. In August 2018, China successfully tested the XINGKONG-2 (Starry Sky-2), which it publicly described as a hypersonic waverider vehicle," the report said, referencing a missile that can travel close to the water to avoid detection and missile defence.
It also details the growth in China's defence budget and its military capabilities, saying it has "nearly doubled during the past 10 years".