Present: PRC military aircraft continue to enter Taiwan's air space in record numbers. Taiwan has counted over 600 PRC military aircraft in its air space so far this year, compared to 380 in all of last year. The Ministry of National Defense has drafted a NT$240 billion special budget for the purchase of domestic missiles and anti-ship missile systems.
On the 6th, National Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng reported to legislators on his ministry's NT$240 billion special budget. Chiu also said this is the worst he has seen cross-strait relations in the 40 years since he entered the military, and likened the situation to a neighborhood squabble with bricks and darts flying all over the place.
Tseng Ming-chung, Legislator (KMT) vs Chiu Kuo-cheng, National Defense Minister:” "(The Taiwan Strait) is the most dangerous place on earth." Minister, do you agree with this title? This is the grimmest I have seen (cross-strait relations) in the 40-plus years since I entered the military.”
PRC military aircraft continue to enter Taiwan's air space in record numbers, with 672 counted by Taiwan so far this year compared to 380 in 2020. Chiu says none of the aircraft have crossed the midline of the Taiwan Strait. Responding to a recent written report that the PRC military could take Taiwan by force in 2025, Chiu pointed out the PRC military could take Taiwan by force any time it wants.
Chiu Kuo-cheng, National Defense Minister:”They have this capability already, but we have to see how it ends. We're not speculating.”
The MND plans to use the special budget to purchase high-performance ships and a variety of domestic missiles. Sixty-four percent of the budget is earmarked for anti-ship warfare, including NT$80 million on the mass production of Hsiung Feng II and III missiles along with Hsiung Feng III extended-range missiles. Chiu says Hsiung Feng missiles can enter into mass production immediately and will unleash Taiwan's combat prowess.
Johnny Chiang, Legislator (KMT) vs Chiu Kuo-cheng, National Defense Minister: “Minister, do you believe that a missile defense strategy is the most effective and lowest-cost way to go? It's a good kind of weapon. If two parties get into a fight, isn't it better to have both a long firearm and a short dagger?”
Chiu also told lawmakers the PRC military has trouble with water combat and Taiwan's military can successfully fend off the PRC with anti-ship missiles. Asked for a progress report on domestic Yun Feng missiles and if their range can reach 1,200 kilometers, Chiu demurred and would only say they are under development.
國民黨立委 曾銘宗 vs. 國防部長 邱國正：「(台海)是世界上最危險的地方，部長贊不贊同這樣一個標題。（我只跟委員報告，是我從軍以來、40多年以來，看到真的最嚴峻的時候。）」
國民黨立委 江啟臣 vs. 國防部長 邱國正：「部長你是不是認為，採取飛彈防禦的策略，是效果最大，成本最低嗎？是個好的一種武器。（我就跟委員講，假如兩個打下來的話，假如有個長槍有個短劍，那不更好嗎？）」