According to a Pentagon assessment, China is on a path to dramatically expand its nuclear arsenal. The report suggests that by 2030, China could possess as many as 1,000 nuclear warheads, along with an array of missiles capable of striking the United States. This projection would mark a doubling from the over 500 warheads that China is currently estimated to have.
The report comes amid heightened attention to China's military modernization efforts, which include not only an increase in nuclear warheads but also advancements in delivery systems such as hypersonic glide vehicles. Furthermore, the report highlights China's reluctance to engage in strategic dialogues with the US regarding its nuclear plans, a stance that adds complexity to global security dynamics.
Despite the projected growth, the report notes that China's nuclear capabilities would still be overshadowed by those of the US and Russia, with both countries' arsenals exceeding 5,000 warheads. The development reflects a shift in global military balances and has potential implications for international stability and arms control efforts.