China is building nuclear warheads at an “accelerating pace” and will have 1,000 by the end of the decade, according to the Pentagon’s new China report released Wednesday after a two-month delay.
Just a year ago in the last China report, the Pentagon had estimated China’s nuclear arsenal to be in the “low-200s” and would “at least double” over the next decade. The new report demonstrates China is expanding much more rapidly.
“The accelerating pace of the PRC’s nuclear expansion may enable the PRC to have up to 700 deliverable nuclear warheads by 2027. The PRC likely intends to have at least 1,000 warheads by 2030, exceeding the pace and size the DoD projected in 2020.”
The PRC, or the People’s Republic of China, is how the Pentagon refers to China.
China is able to build up its nuclear stockpile by “increasing its capacity to produce and separate plutonium,” the report says.
The U.S. is currently treaty limited with Russia to deploy up no more than 1,550 nuclear warheads. China is under no such restrictions because they don’t have any arms control treaties with any other country.