China's navy will celebrate its 68th anniversary on Sunday amidst plans to commission a second aircraft carrier, develop a third one and expand the strength of its marine force from 20,000 to a lakh.
is eyeing more aircraft carriers to enhance its capabilities, experts said, as the People's Liberation Army (PLA) Daily reported the achievements of the Chinese navy
Sunday marks the 68th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese navy, with the PLA Daily
listing the navy's achievements, including escorting ships at sea, building an aircraft battle group, and joint military
There were hints by the Ministry of Defence earlier that the second aircraft carrier which is currently being built at a breakneck speed in Dalian may be launched by Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Recently state-run People's Daily quoted military
experts as saying that the third aircraft carrier to be built in Shanghai may be nuclear powered.
currently has one aircraft carrier, which is a refurbished vessel from the -former Soviet Union. It is building a second one with a third in the pipeline.
Earlier reports said Chinese navy
which now has an expanded role among the military
is set to raise its marine forces from 20,000 to one lakh as it started setting up logistic bases in Gwadar port in Pakistan and Djibouti in Africa.
has enhanced the battle capabilities of its aircraft carrier Liaoning, with more than 10 pilots from carrier-based jet fighters and commanders getting their certificates, making China
one of the few countries capable of training its own pilots for aircraft carriers, the PLA Daily
"In the long run, China
needs to develop its own aircraft carrier battle teams, with at least six aircraft carriers, maritime forces led by guided missile destroyers, as well as attack submarines," Xu Guangyu, a senior advisor to the China
Arms Control and Disarmament Association, told the Global Times
will build about 10 more bases for the six aircraft carriers," Xu said, adding that they can be built around countries friendly to China, such as Pakistan.
could have bases in every continent, but that depends on countries which would like to cooperate with China," Xu said.
is close to completing its second aircraft carrier, which will begin service by 2020, China
Central Television reported, citing military
The PLA report also said patrols to safeguard China's maritime interests have been standardised, with more than 100 patrol boats and jet fighters patrolling key areas.