The Chinese People’s Liberation Army is building several air defense bases in Fujian province. Military experts believe these defense facilities are built in response to Taiwan’s additional purchase of the cruise missiles, with a range up to mainland China.
Taiwan’s United News Network on June 6 published a satellite image from the latest version of Google Earth’s commercial map. It shows that the mountains around Zhangzhou and Fuzhou airports in Fujian appear on a large scale. And the Chinese army is believed to be building another air defense site there.
The size of the new base was increased to two battalions from one battalion at the previous site.
The new military facility appeared after Taiwan’s Legislative Yuan approved a special budget in January 2022. The funding will be used to buy the Hsiung Sheng surface-to-surface cruise missiles to increase the island’s sea and air combat capability.
These missiles have a range of 900 kilometers (about 600 miles), which can cover most of the military bases in the eastern theater of China. They are equipped with two kinds of warheads, high explosive and scattered, targeting military command centers and airfields.
Su Ziyun is director of the Institute for National Defense and Security Research under the National Defense Resources and Industry Research, a think tank established by Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense.
In an interview with VOA, Su Ziyun said the importance of the missile system is Taiwan’s defensive counterattack. These types of warheads can destroy the runway and penetrate to attack reinforced targets, such as bunkers or oil depots and magazines.
Li Zhengxiu, a military expert at Taiwan’s National Policy Research Foundation, estimated about 2,000 short and medium-range missiles were ready to be aimed at Taiwan by mainland China. Taiwan needs to purchase more accurate and longer-range ground-to-ground missiles to avoid being beaten.
If a military conflict occurs between the two sides of the Taiwan strait, the Chinese military will mainly concentrate in Fujian Province, which faces Taiwan. The mainland army will rely on two air defense bases in Fuzhou and Zhangzhou to launch offensives. Therefore, Taiwan must have the ability to counterattack military airfields.
Li Zhengxiu said that Taiwan could suffer huge losses, and the mainland would also bear considerable damage.
The military expert estimated that the range of the Hsiung Sheng missiles even covered Zhejiang, Jiangxi, and even Shanghai, besides Fuzhou and Zhangzhou.
The United News Network reported that the Chinese army would deploy the Hongqi No. 6 projectile and artillery integration system at the newly built air defense base. It is claimed to be capable of countering cruise missiles.