Airmen assigned to a brigade with the PLA airborne troops queue to board a Y-20 transport aircraft during a parachute training exercise on February 17, 2022. (eng.chinamil.com.cn/Photo by Liu Bingbing)
China put into effect new interim rules to regulate military equipment procurement contracts on Sunday that aim to advance the quality and efficiency of equipment procurement, with analysts saying that the new regulations, together with several others that have taken effect since last year related to military equipment, will serve as vital steps to China's pursuit of national defense modernization.
Xi Jinping, chairman of the Central Military Commission, signed an order to promulgate a set of interim rules on regulating military equipment procurement contracts, the Xinhua News Agency reported on Saturday.
Comprising 35 articles in six chapters and taking effect on Sunday, the regulations stipulate the basic tasks, content and management system for the supervision and management of equipment procurement contracts under new circumstances to advance the quality and efficiency of equipment procurement, Xinhua reported.
The new rules will make sure that only equipment up to standard can be delivered to the troops, Xinhua said, without listing the articles of the rules in detail.
It is worth noting that supervision and management are the keywords in the regulations, and these likely apply to not only how the equipment pieces are developed, produced and delivered, but also how the funds are used, Song Zhongping, a Chinese military expert and TV commentator, told the Global Times on Sunday.
Supervision and management are needed to ensure the weapons and equipment that suit the needs of the troops are delivered in accordance with the contracts, as well as to rule out the possibilities of corruption and the unauthorized use of funds during the process, Song said.
The regulations will likely cover procurement contracts signed with both domestic and foreign suppliers, but China has been procuring mainly domestically developed weapons and equipment thanks to the strides it has made in related fields, analysts said.
These are not the first new regulations focusing on military equipment China has launched recently. Xi signed an order to release revised regulations on military equipment in January last year
, new regulations on military equipment procurement in November last year
, then in February this year
regulations on the testing and assessment of military equipment.
During a military conference on weaponry and equipment-related work in October 2021
in Beijing, Xi urged efforts to break new ground in the development of the country's military weaponry and equipment, and contribute to the realization of the goals set for the centennial of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) in 2027.
China aims to basically complete the modernization of national defense and armed forces by 2035 and fully transform the PLA into a world-class military by the mid-21st century, Xinhua reported.
The modernization of military equipment is a vital piece to realize this roadmap, analysts said.
China needs an enhanced, complete process to manage the modernization of military equipment, Song said, noting that this starts from research and development, goes throughout testing, and to the equipment's eventual commissioning and deployment in the PLA.