(PresidentialWire.com)- According to US Navy officials, China’s navy will have about 150 more ships in service than the US Navy by 2028, the Washington Examiner reported.
While testifying before the Senate Appropriations Committee on Tuesday, Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro said the US Naval fleet will be approximately 291 ships by 2028. And while he isn’t able to “exactly” predict what the Chinese navy will have by then, estimates put the Chinese naval fleet at more than 440.
Navy and Marine Corps officials appeared before the Appropriations Committee to pitch their $255.8 billion budget for FY2024. The officials justified the price tag by calling for a renewed “commitment to naval primacy” to meet the threat of China.
When asked if the president’s proposed budget request keeps up with inflation, Secretary Del Toro said it is 2 percent below the approximate 4.6 percent inflation rate federal officials predicted over the past two years.
When asked by Senator Graham what the actual inflation rate is, Del Toro said it is in the 6 percent range.
In his prepared statement to the Appropriations Committee, Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Michael Gilday said in the past two decades, China has “tripled the size of its Navy” and will likely “quadruple” its size by 2030 to more than 400 ships.
Gilday said China’s objective is to “displace the US Navy” from the Western Pacific while enabling China to take actions “short of war” to impose its will on America’s Indo-Pacific allies.
During his testimony, Gidlay added that China’s “investments in offensive warfighting systems” throughout every domain are “aimed at the heart of America’s maritime power.”
Secretary Del Toro said China has added more than “one hundred combatants” to its Naval fleet in the past 20 years which has become a “key component” to Bejing’s “increasingly aggressive military posture.” Del Toro told the senators that China’s “active, aggressive maritime activities” in both the region and beyond could potentially “undermine our system of international law,” including “freedom of the seas” which is a “foundation US interest.”