The PRC's first domestic space launch took place just two months after Japan's first mission in 1970, and since then the paths of these two Asian countries have been remarkably similar. Like Japan, the PRC averages only a few missions each year and has developed the means to reach both LEO (including sun synchronous missions) and GEO. However, the PRC has launched relatively few scientific satellites and has accumulated extensive experience with recoverable spacecraft.
Until 1994 financial details of China's military and civilian space programs were considered state secrets. Moreover, the Chinese governmental budget structure, like that of the former Soviet Union, was not amenable to such specific accountings. Recently the Chinese annual budget for civil space activities, including research and development, launch vehicle and satellite production, and launch site tests, has averaged 1.4-1.5 billion Yuan. Actual launch and satellite control operations are financed separately (References 64-66).