(CNN)A top Chinese official said China will increase its annual defense spending by roughly 7% this year.
China's 2017 defense budget will increase by around 7%
Fu Ying, spokeswoman for the 12th National People's Congress (NPC) annual session, said during a press conference Saturday the increase is in line with China's economic development and defense needs, state-run news agency Xinhua reported.
Fu said defense spending only accounts for about 1.3% of the country's GDP, Xinhua reported.
In 2016, the budget increased by 7.6%. This represented a slowing in comparison to previous years, when budgets were in the double digits.
In 2009, for instance, the amount was closer to 15%, Xinhua reported.
This comes after President Donald Trump proposed increasing US defense and security spending by $54 billion and after he called on NATO countries to increase their defense spending during his first address to Congress Tuesday.