Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency spokesman Hidehiko Nishiyama, right, huddles with his aide during a press conference on the crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear complex, in Tokyo on Friday March 25, 2011. (AP Photo/Kyodo News)
WASHINGTON (AP) — New research shows Asia's top powers have doubled defense spending in the past decade, spurred by the explosion in military expenditure by China.
The report was released Monday by the Center for Strategic and International Studies. The Washington-based organization found that while troop numbers have remained constant, overall spending has grown to $224 billion by 2011. Spending particularly accelerated in the second half of the decade.
The research covers China, Japan, India, South Korea and Taiwan, which account for some 87 percent of Asia's defense spending.
China's share of the total spending has risen from about 20 percent in 2000 to 40 percent in 2011. Worldwide, only the United States spends more on defense.
The official Chinese figures used by the report likely underestimate how much China actually spends.
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