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China's defense spending accounts for 1.4% of 2008 GDP

CHINA'S defense expenditure accounted for 1.4 percent of the country's GDP in 2008, a parliament spokesman said in Beijing today.

"China's limited military force is mainly for safeguarding our sovereignty, and will not pose threat to any country," said Li Zhaoxing, spokesman for the Second Session of the 11th National People's Congress (NPC), the top legislature, at a press conference.

Li said that taking elements as population and territory into consideration, China's defense expenditure was fairly low compared with other countries.

The military spending of the United States accounted for about four percent of its GDP, while those of Britain and France were above two percent, according to Li.

China plans to increase its defense budget by 14.9 percent in 2009, a rise of 62.482 billion yuan from last year to 480.686 billion yuan, Li said.

The budget accounts for 6.3 percent of the country's total fiscal expenditure budget in 2009, a small decrease from previous years, Li said.


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