News that China is building its second aircraft carrier leaked out again on the weekend, once more through official civilian channels before the reports were pulled.
A city government microblog and an official newspaper in Changzhou, Jiangsu province, separately mentioned on Saturday that a power cable manufacturer in the city had “won a tender for the second aircraft carrier”. The sources cited a city government economic and information technology conference held on Friday.
In January last year, Liaoning party chief Wang Min reportedly told a provincial people’s congress panel that the second carrier was being built in Dalian, home to the country’s first carrier.
Various reports also quoted Wang as saying the port city was building two advanced 052D destroyers. The reports were later taken offline. Wang said then that construction of the new carrier would take six years and China’s navy would eventually have four of the vessels.
The Changzhou references to the carrier plan were picked up by a news portal affiliated with Global Times and soon carried by other mainland online news outlets before being taken down.
Under the headline, “Planes, High-speed Railway, Aircraft Carrier – all bear ‘Made in Changzhou'”, the Changzhou Evening News reported that the city government meeting highlighted the ambitious plans for the year of several top manufacturers, ranging from carmakers, to producers of planes and naval vessels.
It said Jiangsu Shangshang Cable Group had “won a tender for the second aircraft carrier”, adding that it was also supplying parts for the navy’s frigates and submarines, which used to rely on imported components.
Global Times reported that Shangshang also supplied power cables for the country’s first carrier, the Liaoning, which was delivered to the navy after a refit in 2012… see more