The Chinese navy came up after the victory of communism over the nationalists. The Chinese are fast learners and bought an old Soviet-era aircraft carrier from Ukraine.The warship was refurbished and commissioned into the Chinese navy as the Liaoning. The warship became operational in 2016. The Chinese did some reverse engineering and started work on a second aircraft carrier in2014. The warship has now been completed. It was constructed at the North Chinese shipbuilding yard at Dalian.The Chinese have so far only completed the hull which was launched two days back.

The various systems that are required for an aircraft carrier are not yet ready and it will take another three years before they are operational. At the earliest, the warship can be ready for combat duty only by 2020. They would be the second navy in the world to operate more than one aircraft Carrier. The UK, France, Russia, and India maintain only one.

Chinese aircraft carrier

The Chinese Aircraft Carrier is, however, not a match for the American carriers. Firstly, it just displaces 50,000 tons which are half the tonnage of the American Nimitz-class warships, that displace nearly 100,000 tons. The Chinese warship is powered by a gas turbine power plant, unlike American ships which are nuclear powered.

This is likely to lead to severe limitations of range and endurance of the Chinese warship. The Chinese warship also carries 24 Nimitz classJ-20 Chengdu Fighters and 12 helicopters compNimitz-class careers like the Carl Vincent which carry 90 operating aircraft. In such a scenario, the Chinese aircraft carrier practically will be no match for the US carrier fleet.

However, the warship can overawe the nations in the China Sea like the Philippines, North Vietnam, and the island state of Formosa.

As per reports, the Chinese are constructing two more carriers but they are also conventional warships with limited tonnage. China has shown its intent to match US navy power in the Pacific.

But the Chinese are ahead of India which is also constructing an indigenous aircraft carrier but delays means it will see the light of the day only by 2024


Operating an aircraft carrier requires perfection and the Chinese do not have much expertise in using aircraft carriers. The US Navy has been operating such warships for close to 100 years. For the Chinese navy to match the US expertise, will take decades. China is building feverishly, not only carriers but other warships as well. The United States must be wary of the Dragon. Under no circumstances can China be a considered a friend of the USA, despite all the handshaking at Trump's resort in Florida.