BEIJING - China will not engage in an arms race with other countries, Defense Ministry spokesman Geng Yansheng said on Wednesday, stressing that China's military growth is for defensive purposes.
The remarks were made in response to a recent report from IHS Jane's, a global think tank specializing in security issues, which claimed China's defense budget would double by 2015.
Geng questioned the sources of the figures in the report, and said China's defense budget is set in accordance with national security needs and the nation's economic growth level.
"The development of our military capabilities will not exceed our national security needs or economic capacity, and we will not engage in an arms race with other countries," Geng said at the ministry's monthly news conference.
This report is only one of a number published recently that have played up the "China threat".
Earlier this month, Japan's National Institute for Defense Studies released the China Security Report 2011, which said China is strengthening its military power to be able to stand up to the United States in regional resource development, according to the Global Times.
The report predicted that the South China Sea would be a major focus for China, and that the nation would strengthen its military power to ensure the safety of trade routes and its ability to counterbalance the US military, according to the newspaper.
Geng said the report was "making a wild guess" on China's military development and "playing up China's military threats", which "does no good for the development of Sino-Japanese relations or regional peace and stability".
Geng pointed out that Japan's military buildup in recent years has drawn much attention from the international community, especially neighboring countries.