The US is developing aircraft carrier-based unmanned armed planes or drones in a bid to increase its deterrence in the wake of China’s military rise.

The Associated Press reported a US Navy commander Vice-Admiral Scott Van Buskirk as saying that the drones were expected to be deployed in the Asia-Pacific region.

“They will play an integral role in our future operations in this region,” he added.

The US has developed land-based drones that are widely used in the war in Afghanistan, but sea-based versions will take several more years to develop.