18 November 2015

U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission Releases 2015 Report to Congress

Click here to read the press release accompanying the report’s roll out.

The full text of the report is available here.

Click here to view individual sections of the report.


2015 Annual Report to Congress of the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission, One Hundred Fourteenth Congress, First Session (Washington, DC: USCC, 17 November 2015).


Report PDFs: 

2015 Annual Report to Congress

Executive Summary and Recommendations

Comprehensive List of Recommendations


Chapter 1 U.S.-China Economic and Trade Relations.pdf

Chapter 1, Section 1 – Year in Review, Economics and Trade.pdf

Chapter 1, Section 2 – Foreign Investment Climate in China.pdf

Chapter 1, Section 3 – China’s State-Led Market Reform and Competitiveness Agenda.pdf

Chapter 1, Section 4 – Commercial Cyber Espionage and Barriers to Digital Trade in China.pdf

Chapter 2 U.S-China Security Relations.pdf

Chapter 2, Section 1 – Year in Review, Security and Foreign Affairs.pdf

Chapter 2, Section 2 – China’s Space and Counterspace Programs.pdf

Chapter 2, Section 3 – China’s Offensive Missile Forces.pdf

Chapter 3 China and the World.pdf

Chapter 3, Section 1 – China and Central Asia.pdf

Chapter 3, Section 2 – China and Southeast Asia.pdf

Chapter 3, Section 3 Taiwan.pdf

Chapter 3, Section 4 – Hong Kong.pdf


Selected Quotations:

p. 339

As the Second Artillery’s missions have expanded, so has its bureaucratic status within the PLA. … According to Andrew Erickson, associate professor at the U.S. Naval War College, China’s upcoming military restructuring—outlined in 2013 and initiated by the 300,000-personnel troop cut announced at the September 2015 military parade—will likely not result in any demotion to the Second Artillery’s status….

p. 353

Antiship Ballistic Missiles. China fielded the world’s first ASBM in 2010, a variant of the DF–21 family of MRBMs known as the DF–21D. Its range of at least 1,500 kilometers (932 miles) and maneuverable warhead give it the ability to strike moving adversary ships east of Taiwan from secure sites on the Chinese mainland. According to Mr. Erickson, China’s DF–21D capability means that ‘‘in a crisis or combat situation, U.S. operators would have to draw a range ring for the DF–21D and then decide whether or not to risk sending [carrier strike groups] into that range ring.’’ 87 Furthermore, because of the complex over-the-horizon targeting and maritime C4ISR required to successfully execute an ASBM strike, Professor Erickson argues the DF–21D is one element of a broader program to track and target ships at sea. …

Official commentary at China’s September 2015 military parade stated that the DF–26 also has an antiship variant, indicating it has joined the DF–21D as an ASBM. The DF–26 represents an even longer-range option, with a credited range of 3,000–4,000 kilometers (1,800–2,500 miles).91 According to Mr. Erickson, parading both missiles indicates that they have been ‘‘tested carefully and accepted into military service as operational hardware,’’ but ‘‘the reconnaissance strike complex [for an antiship capability] that supports them, by contrast, remains a work in progress.’’ The additional range likely complicates the targeting challenge China already faces with the DF–21D. …

p. 357

Taken together, the variety of platforms the PLA Navy has equipped with ASCMs provides China with a multilayered area denial capability in its near seas and beyond. Professor Gormley, along with co-authors Mr. Erickson and Jingdong Yuan, states in a study on Chinese cruise missiles: ‘‘ASCMs are increasingly poised to challenge U.S. surface vessels, especially in situations where the quantity of missiles fired can overwhelm Aegis air defense systems through saturation and multi-axis tactics. More advanced future Chinese aircraft carriers might be used to bring ASCM- and LACM-capable aircraft within range of U.S. targets.’’ …

p. 447

…according to U.S. Naval War College associate professor Andrew Erickson and research fellow Conor Kennedy, China under President Xi is ‘‘strengthening its maritime militia, a dual-hatted force of specially registered fishing vessels with fisherman-soldier crews. Portions of these coastal militias are organized by local military and government officials along the nation’s many ports, providing China with small tactical units designed to execute specific missions in support of the country’s more professional military and maritime interests.’’ China’s maritime militias receive military training, including in the use of light weapons. China is training these maritime militias to support the activities of the PLA Navy and China’s maritime law enforcement forces in the South China Sea. Among its duties, the Tanmen Village Maritime Militia Company on Hainan Island encourages fishermen to upgrade their fishing boats, activities that Dr. Erickson and Mr. Kennedy assert ‘‘have expanded Chinese patriot fishermen fleets multifold in recent years.’’ The company also transports building materials, water, and food to Chinese outposts in the Spratly Islands, and conducts maritime search and rescue and reconnaissance, gathering information for the PLA. These militias are well-resourced, with subsidies provided by the central and local governments to build new fishing boats; 29 new boats were ordered for the Tanmen Maritime Militia, and 17 of these boats have been delivered. …

Selected Citations:

Andrew S. Erickson, ‘‘China Military Parade—3 September 2015—Your Complete Hardware and Logistics Guide (Updated Version),’’ China Analysis from Original Sources 以第一手资料研究中国, 2 September 2015.

Andrew S. Erickson, “Missile March: China Parade Projects Patriotism at Home, Aims for Awe Abroad,” China Real Time Report (中国实时报), Wall Street Journal, 3 September 2015.

Andrew S. Erickson, “‘Rich Nation, Strong Army’? Resource Inputs for PLA Modernization,” Testimony before the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission, Panel II: “Inputs to China’s Military Modernization,” “China’s Military Modernization and its Implications for the United States” hearing, Washington, DC, 30 January 2014.

Adam P. Liff and Andrew S. Erickson, “Demystifying China’s Defence Spending: Less Mysterious in the Aggregate,” The China Quarterly 216 (December 2013): 805-30.

Andrew S. Erickson and Adam P. Liff, “The Budget This Time: Taking the Measure of China’s Defense Spending,” ASAN Forum 2.2 (March-April 2014).

Andrew S. Erickson and Adam P. Liff, “China’s Military Spending Swells Again Despite Domestic Headwinds,” China Real Time Report (中国实时报), Wall Street Journal, 5 March 2015.

Peter Dutton and Andrew S. Erickson, “When Eagle Meets Dragon: Managing Risk in Maritime East Asia,” RealClearDefense, 25 March 2015.

Andrew S. Erickson and Adam P. Liff, “China’s Military Development, Beyond the Numbers,” The Diplomat, 12 March 2013.

Andrew S. Erickson and Gabe Collins, “China Carrier Demo Module Highlights Surging Navy,” The National Interest, 6 August 2013.

Andrew S. Erickson, “Chinese Air- and Space-Based ISR: Integrating Aerospace Combat Capabilities over the Near Seas,” in Peter Dutton, Andrew S. Erickson, and Ryan Martinson, eds., China’s Near Seas Combat Capabilities, Naval War College China Maritime Study 11(February 2014), 87-117.

Andrew S. Erickson and Lyle J. Goldstein, eds., Chinese Aerospace Power: Evolving Maritime Roles (Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 2011).

Gabriel B. Collins and Andrew S. Erickson, “Djibouti Likely to Become China’s First Indian Ocean Outpost,” China SignPost™ (洞察中国) 91 (11 July 2015).

Andrew S. Erickson, A Statement before the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission, Panel III: “China’s Political and Security Challenges in the Middle East,” “China and the Middle East” hearing, Washington, DC, 6 June 2013.

Gabriel B. Collins and Andrew S. Erickson, “China Dispatches Warship to Protect Libya Evacuation Mission: Marks the PRC’s first use of frontline military assets to protect an evacuation mission,” China SignPost™ (洞察中国) 25 (24 February 2011).

Gabriel B. Collins and Andrew S. Erickson, “Implications of China’s Military Evacuation of Citizens from Libya,” Jamestown China Brief, 11.4 (10 March 2011): 8-10.

Andrew S. Erickson and Amy Chang, “China’s Navigation in Space: What New Approaches will China’s Space Tracking Take?U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings, 138.4 (April 2012): 42-47.

Andrew S. Erickson, “Microsatellites: A Bellwether of Chinese Aerospace Progress?” in Lisa Parks and James Schwoch, eds., Down to Earth: Satellite Technologies, Industries, and Cultures (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2012), 254-79.

Dennis M. Gormley, Andrew S. Erickson, and Jingdong Yuan, A Low-Visibility Force Multiplier: Assessing China’s Cruise Missile Ambitions (Washington, D.C.: National Defense University Press, 2014).

Andrew S. Erickson and Michael S. Chase, “China’s Strategic Rocket Force: Upgrading Hardware and Software (Part 2 of 2),” Jamestown China Brief 14.14 (17 July 2014).

Andrew S. Erickson and Michael S. Chase, “China’s Strategic Rocket Force: Sharpening the Sword (Part 1 of 2),” Jamestown China Brief 14.13 (3 July 2014).

Andrew S. Erickson,Showtime: China Reveals Two ‘Carrier-Killer’ Missiles,” The National Interest, 3 September 2015.

Michael S. Chase and Andrew S. Erickson, “The Conventional Missile Capabilities of China’s Second Artillery Force: Cornerstone of Deterrence and Warfighting,” Asian Security, 8.2 (Summer 2012): 115-37.

Peter Dutton, Andrew S. Erickson, and Ryan Martinson, eds., China’s Near Seas Combat Capabilities, Naval War College China Maritime Study 11 (February 2014).

Andrew S. Erickson, Chinese Anti-Ship Ballistic Missile Development: Drivers, Trajectories, and Strategic Implications (Washington, DC: Jamestown Foundation, May 2013).

Dennis M. Gormley, Andrew S. Erickson, and Jingdong Yuan, “A Potent Vector: Assessing Chinese Cruise Missile Developments,” Joint Force Quarterly 75 (4thQuarter/30 September 2014): 98-105.

Andrew S. Erickson and Kevin Bond, “Dredging Under the Radar: China Expands South Sea Foothold,” The National Interest, 26 August 2015.

Andrew S. Erickson, “Lengthening Chinese Airstrips May Pave Way for South China Sea ADIZ,” The National Interest, 27 April 2015.

Andrew S. Erickson and Conor M. Kennedy, “China’s Island Builders: The People’s War at Sea,” Foreign Affairs, 9 April 2015.

Andrew S. Erickson and Conor M. Kennedy, “Meet the Chinese Maritime Militia Waging a ‘People’s War at Sea’,” China Real Time Report (中国实时报), Wall Street Journal, 31 March 2015.

Andrew S. Erickson and Conor M. Kennedy, “Tanmen Militia: China’s ‘Maritime Rights Protection’ Vanguard,” The National Interest, 6 May 2015.

Andrew S. Erickson and Austin Strange, “China’s Global Maritime Presence: Hard and Soft Dimensions of PLAN Antipiracy Operations,” Jamestown China Brief 15.9 (1 May 2015).