China is acquiring high-end military weapons and equipment five to six times faster than the US, according to an American defense official.
Maj. Gen. Cameron Holt from the US Air Force acquisition, technology, and logistics office said that aside from the faster acquisition of weapons, Beijing is operating the equipment far more efficiently than Washington.
“In purchasing power parity, they spend about one dollar to our 20 dollars to get to the same capability,” he revealed during the Government Contracting Pricing Summit in California.
He noted that the US could lose the heated arms race if it does not figure out how to drop the cost of weapons and increase the speed of defense supply chains.
Holt’s statement comes as China continues investing in cutting-edge military technologies.
Last month, the Asian nation tested its land-based ballistic missile interception system. It also launched its third aircraft carrier at a Shanghai shipyard.
Holt, who oversees contracting for the US Air Force, claims that the country’s inability to match China in weapons procurement is due to its “resourcing system.”
The “slow and stodgy” budgetary framework affects the pace of weapons purchases in the US.
The current system allegedly has a slow process of getting budgets signed as it requires submission of sustainment and lifecycle costs.
“If we don’t change our resourcing system, none of the rest of it matters,” Holt stressed.
He suggests an immediate shift to a “cash flow” model, which would include provisions for the faster movement of funds.