China began sea trials of the aircraft carrier, own production

China's sole operational aircraft carrier the Liaoning is a repurposed Soviet ship bought from Ukraine

China's sole operational aircraft carrier the Liaoning is a repurposed Soviet ship bought from Ukraine

Footage aired by CCTV showed the imposing carrier accompanied by several smaller military craft leaving a wharf and heading out to sea.

Xinhua news agency released a photograph of the ship a short distance from port, and stated that the seat trials will test the "stability and reliability" of the carrier's power system and equipment.

The new vessel, by comparison, will focus on what a genuine aircraft carrier is supposed to do like conducting combat-ready patrols and safeguarding China's maritime sovereignty and interests, the report said.

The new carrier, which has a cruising speed of 31 knots, is based on the same Soviet Kuznetsov-class design used for the Liaoning, with a ski-jump type ramp for taking off, unlike United States carriers, which have more advanced catapult technology.

Naval experts said the Chinese engineers and designers who built the ship had studied the most advanced military technology used by the Americans, as well as the former Soviet Union, and tried to incorporate it into the new ship to meet the practical needs of the PLA Navy.

The conventional-fuel-powered vessel is about 300 meters long. China's first aircraft carrier - Liaoning - was also a 'Type 001 aircraft carrier. However, even with the potential development of further carriers, it could still be years before China's navy is able to deploy its fleet effectively, said Tsang.

Beijing and New Delhi have embarked on an extensive project to build a "blue water" navy and modernise its over million-strong militaries.

Now the carrier, currently identified as "Type 001A" will undergo a series of tests at sea, before being officially commissioned into service by the Chinese Navy (PLAN) in 2020. The Liaoning went into service in 2012 after being refitted in China.

There was also speculation early last week that President Xi Jinping may oversee the sea trial during his trip to Dalian, where he met North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

Beijing sees democratically governed Taiwan as a renegade part of its territory to be brought back into the fold and has not ruled out reunification by force. China reportedly plans to have four aircraft carriers by 2030 to beef up its navy as it asserts its claims in the Indian Ocean and the disputed South China Sea.

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