First there was the Kursk, now this. Any Chinese sailors on PWI who are waiting to get on the next Russian-built Akula class?
Sure, the Chinese can build their own nuke subs, but it takes time. A lot of time and a lot more money. For now, they'll just have to stick to their 5 knot diesel boats unless they want to end up in Davey Jones' locker.
Back in the heyday of communism, when one needed a license to buy a car, one of the models for commoners was VAZ-2101, a copy of Fiat 124. I have been told by a person who visited the factories in the 70's, that it was normal to store the chassis outdoors. When they needed one they took haphazardly one more or less rusty chassis and spraypainted it over.
On the other hand, the first batch ever maid had their chassis and bolts thoroughly covered with a layer of tin and these cars are supposedly still in excellent condition.
VAZ-2101 aka Zhiguli in russia and Lada abroad was commonly known for it's haphazard quality. Many people refused to even call it a car. It was cheap and it's strength was that it started well in the winter.
Which is why I do not worry about China. You have to have a navy to support an overseas adventure. It is simply too expensive to fly everything overseas to feed your army. In order to keep SLOCs open, you have to have a working submarine escort, which the Chinese don't have.
China has no "blue sea navy" because in this day and age - in modern warfare - a navy is pretty useless. A bunch of big, costly targets just waiting for a volley of low cost missiles to turn them into so many tourist dive sites.
We do better: Our ships are pretty much self-sinking.
Just like what happened when we sailed our navy over to the Gulf for the Iraq war II. All of our carrier battle groups are at the bottom of the Gulf to become future dive sites, once enough coral and barnacles fix themselves to the hulls, right? We were unable to launch sortie after sortie from the decks of our carriers because they were at the bottom of the ocean after being hit by numerous exocet missiles. I hope we learned our lesson from that ordeal. From now on, we'll just keep our ships in shallow enough water that we can jump off and walk to shore like the Canadian navy.
Well duh. The Exocet is crap. It's got a ridiculously short range... Iraq has almost no coastline with the Gulf. Try it with someone who has missile technology that doesn't predate the Carter Administration and see how well that goes.