Insight: China builds its own military-industrial complex By David Lague and Charlie Zhu | Reuters â 17 hrs ago Now, after more than two decades of soaring military spending, this once backward industry has been transformed -- China is creating its own military-industrial complex, with the private sector taking a leading role. This would double the value of military related assets injected into these listed companies since 2007 with more in the pipeline, as Beijing presses ahead with an ambitious program to privatize most of a vast arms industry employing more than a million workers at more than 1,000 state-owned enterprises. The growth of the domestic arms industry has allowed China to steadily reduce military imports. In this period, China slipped to fourth place in the ranks of global arms buyers after holding top position in the five years to 2006. Some Chinese-made equipment is now thought to be comparable to their Russian or Western counterparts, military experts say, although they acknowledge that accurate information about the performance of PLA weapons remains scarce. Over the last decade, China has launched two classes of locally designed and built conventional submarines that are now the mainstays of the PLA's underwater fleet. It has also built versions of the Su-27 combat aircraft and begun mass production of its J-10 fighter that some experts rank with the U.S.-made F-16 in performance. China reportedly has developed its first stealth fighter, the J-20, but details of its capabilities remain unclear. Chinese factories also appear to have made rapid progress in developing a range of advanced missiles. These include up to 1,000 ballistic and cruise missiles deployed against Taiwan and new mobile launchers for the PLA's nuclear weapons. Beijing is enlisting the private sector to accelerate the rise of its best defense contractors, issuing new guidelines in July aimed at encouraging private investment in a sector traditionally sheltered from competition and public scrutiny. Twenty-one months after Chinaâs Chengdu aerospace firm unveiled its J-20 jet fighter prototype â Beijingâs first stealth warplane â the rival Shenyang company has revealed what appears to be a competing, radar-evading plane. So China now possesses two potentially combat-capable stealth jets. http://news.yahoo.com/insight-china-builds-own-military-industrial-complex-211411700.html Military enterprises being privatized.