China's military, the world's largest, will speed up its modernization over the next five years, Chinese President Hu Jintao said Monday.
In his keynote speech at the opening of a twice-a-decade Communist Party Congress, Hu said he was committed to making China's military more modern.
"We must build strong armed forces through science and technology," he said. "In keeping with the new trends in world military affairs and the new requirements of China's development, we must promote innovation in military theory, technology, organization and development," Hu said.
China says spending for its People's Liberation Army, the world's largest standing army with 2.3 million members, grew 17.8 percent this year to about 351 billion yuan (US$44.94 billion). It was the largest annual increase in more than a decade.