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People's Daily Online

Chinese military-industrial enterprises get closer to NATO

People's Daily Online

(China Military Online) 09:52, October 10, 2013

BEIJING, October 9 (ChinaMil) -- Turkey's plan to purchase China's 'HQ-9' air-defense missile system is met with new resistance due to the interference made by NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who expressed concern on October 7 about the cooperation between Turkey and Chinese companies and requested Turkey to choose anti-missile system 'compatible' with NATO allies.

Prior to this, the U.S. expressed its 'serious concern' to Turkey through multiple channels. Meanwhile, western media criticized Turkey for its unwise move of turning to the East, blaming that it 'shouldn't count on an untrustworthy military power'.

Given such massive pressure from the West, will Turkey continue its cooperation with China, choose to give up, or make use of its cooperation with China as leverage to bargain with the West? Something is quite clear: China is still faced with various obstacles imposed by the West in the process of its dealing with the world.

According to some analysts, succeed or not, China's military-industrial enterprises' closer approach to the NATO countries is in itself a very 'prominent advertising'.

'The eventual cancellation of the guided missile agreement is still a success to China,' the Reuters made such judgment. Despite the U.S.'s and the NATO's threat to break the agreement, Turkey's wish to purchase guided missiles from China is already a major breakthrough for China, a country which has always wished to become a supplier country of advanced weapons. For the first time, China has defeated arms manufacturers from the U.S., Russia and Western Europe and won over advanced weapon purchase order from a NATO member country.

As stated by Oliver, researcher of China's arms exports from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI): 'If the deal is eventually carried out, it shall bear special significance and become a mile-stone agreement'. According to his article, Turkey may probably give up the agreement under pressure, but some Chinese and foreign commentators believe that it is still a symbolic victory to China. Turkey's original willingness to choose 'HQ-9' has shown the rapid progress and advancement in China's guided-missile and aerospace technologies as well as its greatly improved competitiveness. This has also indicated that while the military-industrial enterprises of China are expanding the export of such common weapons as small arms, cannons, armored vehicles, and so on, they are becoming suppliers of high-end weapons with reasonable prices.

The Russian daily Kommersant quoted the statement made by Lamanov from the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences (PAH) on October 6 that this contract is the best advertising for the Chinese military-industrial enterprise in its debut in the arms market of NATO countries.

Professor Zhang Zhaozhong from the National Defense University (NDU) of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) expressed in an interview that this deal is by no means a small business to Turkey because it determines whether Turkey dares or not to take the risk of going against the grain and breaking up with NATO. To China, this isn't a small incident either. If it goes successfully, it shall exert demonstration effects on other countries.

Zhang continued that according to the resolution made by EU to ban the arms sale to China, sales of weapons to China by NATO countries are subject to restrictions. On the other hand, there are no similar regulations on Chin's sale of arms to NATO countries. To begin with, it never occurred to them that any country might have the need to purchase weapons from China. That's why NATO and the U.S. are so aggressively responding by suppressing 'purchases of weapons from any of NATO's opponents'. This also explains the fact that China still faces a lot of obstacles imposed by the West in the process of its dealing with the world. However, as long as it doesn't break the law, China can seek expansion and work hard to make breakthrough.



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