BEIJING, March 29 (Xinhua) -- The increase of China's military budget is reasonable and should be viewed objectively, Defense Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun said Thursday at a monthly press briefing.
China increased its military budget this year to 670 billion yuan (106 billion U.S. dollars). The budget was ratified at the annual parliamentary session this month.
Yang said it is a natural requirement for China to raise the military budget to safeguard national security and the increase was in accordance with the level of China's economic and social development.
"First of all, with the national economic and social development, and the improvement of people's living standards, there is a need to raise the living standards and other relevant expenditures for officers and soldiers," Yang said.
"Secondly, military training requires a rise in expenditure of military exercise and college education as well as military infrastructure construction," he said.
"Thirdly, Chinese army must be equipped with new facilities in the course of military informationization," Yang added.
"China increased its military budget by 11.2 percent in 2012, while the budgets for education, public health, and social security and employment were increased 17.5 percent, 15.4 percent and 16.1 percent respectively," Yang said.
Yang said Chinese military spending only accounted for 1.28 percent of China's total GDP in 2011, and the budget for 2012 is one sixth of that of the United States.
"China has no hidden military expenditure," he said.
"Allegations like rapid growth of China's military spending or speculation that China has a hidden military expenditure is either due to ignorance or ulterior motives," Yang said. "We hope relevant parties can view China's military budget in a professional and responsible way."