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China’s Air Defense Identification System: The Role of PLA Air Surveillance

By: Mark Stokes |

In the wake of the 18th Central Committee’s Third Plenum in November 2013, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) Ministry of National Defense (MND) announced the establishment of its first air defense identification zone (ADIZ). Assessments of the ADIZ to date have focused in large part on implications for territorial and maritime disputes in region. However, other potential drivers may offer additional context for the decision. Among these include coercion of Taiwan, unprecedented changes in China’s national airspace management system, and technical advances that have enhanced interoperability between the People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) and Navy (PLAN).