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He said China defended and contributed to the UN-centered global order, but also said some reforms were necessary.

His comments came amid growing China-US discord over Trump's announcement of increasing tariffs over US imports of steel and aluminium.

He said it is only natural that there is some trade friction between the 2 countries.

This weekend, China will begin its 2018 political season with the first plenary session of the 13th National People's Congress (NPC), China's top legislature, and the first session of the 13th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, the country's advisory body, opening on March 5 and 3 respectively.

Zhang said only that the scale of the nation's military budget is smaller than that of other major counties, adding China's defense development will not pose a threat to any other country.

"They feel agitated about China's rise because China successfully forges ahead on its own path of development, shattering their illusion that the world should follow their pattern and move forward according to their will", the scholar said.

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Zhang said all countries adjusted their military spending depending on defensive needs and the state of the economy.

On Thursday, President Donald Trump said the usa would slap tariffs on steel and aluminum imports to protect national security, drawing threats of retaliation from Asian and European countries.

The finance ministry previous year said the defence budget would top 1 trillion yuan ($145 billion U.S.) for the first time, after the exact figure was initially kept out of public documents released at the start of the annual legislative sessions. This was a slight dip from the 7.6-per-cent increase in 2016. The president-elect also vowed to impose a 45-percent tariff on imports from China, blaming the cheap imports for the loss of jobs in the United States.

"What's alarming is not the non-reporting of largely fictitious defence spending figures so much as the Chinese leadership is shedding even the pretense of being open about its military plans", Jennings said in an email to The Associated Press.

Removing presidential term limits in the state constitution is about protecting the authority of the ruling Communist Party with President Xi Jinping at its center, a Chinese government spokesman said on Sunday.

He said policy communication is going deeper, cooperation mechanisms are being strengthened and collaboration on the ground is unfolding across the board.