Also on March 5, China's Ministry of Finance unveiled a report at the Congress opening session, announcing that the Chinese regime plans to increase its military spending by 8.1 percent this year, bumping up its defense budget to 1.107 trillion yuan (about $175 billion).
He also said the military, the government, and its people must always be as "strong as stone".
According to Maj. Gen. Zhen Chou, the increase in China's national defense budget is reasonable, legal, appropriate and sustainable, given the profound changes in China's national strength, the security environment and the global strategic situation.
China's defence budget nearly grew as much as its GDP in the past two years as far as percentage points are concerned. But China's still dwarfs other nations.
The proposal, part of Trump's budget request for the US government, would provide the Pentagon $617-billion and an additional $69-billion to fund ongoing wars in fiscal year 2019. He said China should step up the building of a Free Trade Area Asia-Pacific trade bloc.
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Senior leaders including Wang Yang, Wang Huning and Han Zheng, all members of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, also joined panel discussions of political advisors and NPC deputies Tuesday.
Since China plans to cut taxes this year, it will nearly certainly have to achieve its budget deficit goal through reduced spending, according to the Capital Economics analysts.
China's defence budget in 2017 was 7 per cent of the country's GDP and has been in single digit since 2013, but this year's military spending is the highest in three years.
Despite the increase, China still lags far behind USA military spending, which is expected to increase by $80 billion next year to a total of $686 billion.
He pointed out that the new budgetary allocations were in tune with China's transition to a innovation-based economy that would leverage Artificial Intelligence, Big Data and Internet of Things to produce world-class products under the "Made in- China 2025" plan.
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"Some spending will be hidden in civilian spending", said the diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Li said China "remains the largest developing country in the world" and faces "a number of acute problems".
In Li's almost 2-hour report, Li mentioned Taiwan twice, with less time spent on Taiwan policy compared to his last year's report at the 19 Party Congress, in which he reaffirmed Xi Jinping's six principles, including the "One China" principle and the 1992 Consensus, according to Apple Daily.
China says it spends 1.3 percent of its GDP on military spending.
President Xi Jinping has been intensifying his push to curb pollution, poverty and debt risk at a time when the world's second-largest economy is on a long-term growth slowdown.
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China's per capita spending on defense was lower than most other major countries, Zhang Yesui, a 13th Congress spokesperson, told reporters Sunday in Beijing.
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