China to increase overseas military bases: Pentagon report



Beijing will seek to add bases to provide security to One Belt, One Road infrastructure projects, Pentagon report says.

The US Defense Department expects China to add military bases around the world to protect its investments in its ambitious One Belt, One Road global infrastructure programme, according to an official report released on Thursday.

Beijing currently has just one overseas military base, in Djibouti, but is believed to be planning others, including possibly in Pakistan, as it seeks to project itself as a global superpower.

“China’s advancement of projects such as the ‘One Belt, One Road’ Initiative (OBOR) will probably drive military overseas basing through a perceived need to provide security for OBOR projects,” the Pentagon said in its annual report to Congress on Chinese military and security developments.

“China will seek to establish additional military bases in countries with which it has a longstanding friendly relationship and similar strategic interests, such as Pakistan, and in which there is a precedent for hosting foreign militaries,” the report said.

But target locations for military basing could include the Middle East, Southeast Asia, and the Western Pacific.