Ship ahoy: China, US locked in naval warship race

In a move reminiscent of the Anglo-German naval arms race before World War I, China and the US are upping the ante by seeking to outbuild each other in large surface warships.

China has just announced that its second Type 055 cruiser Lhasa is combat-ready after a series of tests in the Yellow Sea. The Lhasa recently finished eight days of training simulations, including naval gunnery, missile firing, antisubmarine warfare, defense against chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) threats, visit, board, search, and seizure (VBSS), personnel rescue and damage control.

Moreover, China is reportedly building two more Type 055 cruisers, which are being assembled in a large drydock in Dalian. China plans to induct a total of eight Type 055s into service over the next four years. Currently, China has three operational Type 055 cruisers, with the first of class Nanchang commissioned in 2020 and the Lhasa and Dalian commissioned in 2021.

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