The People's Liberation Army Navy
, also known as the Chinese Navy
, PLA Navy
, is the naval warfare branch of the People's Liberation Army, the armed wing of the Communist Party of China and, by default, the national armed forces of the People's Republic of China. The PLAN can trace its lineage to naval units fighting during the Chinese Civil War and was established on 23 April 1949. Throughout the 1950s and early 1960s, the Soviet Union provided assistance to the PLAN in the form of naval advisers and export of equipment and technology. Until the late 1980s, the PLAN was largely a riverine and littoral force. However, by the 1990s, following the fall of the Soviet Union and a shift towards a more forward-oriented foreign and security policy, the leaders of the Chinese military were freed from worrying over land border disputes. Having traditionally been subordinated to the PLA Ground Force, PLAN leaders were able to advocate for a renewed attention towards the seas.