Last Friday, China launched its third and most advanced aircraft carrier, Fujian, from Jiangnan Shipyard in Shanghai. It is reportedly the first aircraft carrier wholly designed and built in China. Fujian is expected to be an ingenious military advancement for China regarding its prowess and naval capacity.
The launching of the new aircraft carrier named the “Fujian” (previously known as Type 003) comes after increased tensions along the Taiwan Strait as China aggressively postures against the US and Taiwan. China has expressed that it wants to “reunify” the entire Chinese population through whatever means, even if that means by force. However, they have also said they are pursuing a more peaceful approach to “reunification.”
As described by state news outlet China Central Television (CCTV), the Fujian is the most technologically advanced carrier in the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) ‘s fleet, boasting that it was the “first catapult aircraft carrier wholly designed and built by China.” As China names its aircraft carriers after its provinces, China interestingly called this most recent aircraft carrier the “Fujian,” after the Chinese Province “Fujian,” which is also the closest province to Taiwan. At the Taiwan Strait’s narrowest point, China and Taiwan are separated by a mere 80 miles (128 km).
Chinese state media showed naval officers watching the launch of the aircraft carrier last Friday, where fireworks and confetti were released, along with red banners celebrating the Chinese’s goal of building a modern navy.