China has deployed a fourth-generation SAM system from Woody island in the South China Sea.

The satellite imagery taken on 14 February indicates that China deployed two batteries of eight missile launchers and a radar system from the island.

Despite the location positioned within the 200nm zone of China, Woody island has been subject of a territorial dispute between China, Taiwan and Vietnam for years.

IHS Jane’s Neil Ashdown said: "It is probable that the deployment was intended to send a message to the US and other claimants in the South China Sea, in the wake of freedom of navigation operations conducted by US naval vessels in October 2015 and January 2016."

"There is every evidence, every day, that there has been an increase of militarisation from one kind or another."

US Secretary of State John Kerry said the US expects to have a ‘very serious conversation’ with China over the issue.

Kerry added: "There is every evidence, every day, that there has been an increase of militarisation from one kind or another. It’s a serious concern."

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.

The move follows the recent sail of the USS Curtis Wilbur, a US Navy guided missile destroyer which navigated within 12 miles of Triton Island in the South China Sea to contest Chinese territorial claims.