The Chinese military is increasing efforts to beef up its nuclear capabilities and its nuclear missile technology, according to a new report. Stars and Stripes reported on Tuesday that China was developing the Dong Feng-41 missile, which is next-generation intercontinental ballistic missile capable of launching multiple nuclear warheads. The report also noted that Chinese officials have not confirmed the project, adding the country also conducted tests this month of its current land-based missile standard, the DF-31A. American officials also claimed that China will have operational nuclear missile-equipped submarines this year. “Why is China, a country with a “no first-use” policy, upgrading its nuclear arsenal at a time when the United States and Russia are reducing their stockpiles?” the report argued. This is while Federation of American Scientists figures said China’s nuclear arsenal is thought to total about 250 warheads, compared with 2,104 operational US warheads and thousands in reserve. Chinese officials have cited US ballistic missile and military conventional strike capability as reasons for the need to upgrade their nuclear arsenal. The report comes despite the fact that the Obama administration has a long-term plan for the Asia-Pacific region, called “pivot” of US military towards the region. Experts warn that President Barack Obama’s “pivot” strategy towards Asia and the US military buildup in the Pacific could lead to a potential clash with China. Relations between Washington and Beijing have strained during the past months over a number of issues, including China’s declaration of an air defense zone over the East China Sea.