India May Lose Aircraft Carrier Edge Over China


China is set to begin preliminary sea trials of its second aircraft carrier within a month or so, even as it steams ahead with plans to also construct mammoth nuclear-powered ones, signalling its hard-nosed intent to project military power on the high seas in the years ahead.

China’s scorching pace in constructing aircraft carriers confronts India, which has been operating such sea-going airbases or “flat-tops” for over five decades now, with the very real prospect of losing its long-standing edge over its larger neighbour in this arena.

India is currently making do with just one aircraft carrier in the shape of the 44,400-tonne INS Vikramaditya, the refurbished Admiral Gorshkov inducted from Russia for $2.33 billion in November 2013. Read More…

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