When facing a profound disadvantage in one area or another of military capability, states often fall victim to the temptation to narrow the inequality through mirroring procurement decisions. For example, the US and the USSR most often responded to each others developments in military science by creating capabilities that mirrored their opponent....I would add that this is why I'm not concerned about Chinese military adventurism beyond the immediate Taiwanese question (and less concerned there than some.) China is building a modern military with a specific objective - "re"taking Taiwan. This will not, for a variety of reasons, be the same military that can invade Korea, Japan, or march south to Singapore. It will by necessity be a military that can repulse American attacks, but there is no sign of Chinese carriers bombing Pearl Harbor. Not just "no sign in the near or mid-future", no sign at all.
There is certainly a sociological imperative to engage in this kind of behavior, as possession of the most modern types of weapons conveys, both internationally and domestically, prestige and a sense of what might be termed "modern state-hood".
China's defense procurement, by and large, does not seem driven by this logic. Instead, China seems to be actively thinking about and planning for a war with the United States over Taiwan, a project which, among other things, must be regarded as quite sensible from the Chinese point of view. Instead of trying to equal US naval capabilities, the PLAN is working hard to develop the means to kill US carriers, thus largely nullifying the US naval advantage. In response to "network-centric" warfare that relies heavily on satellite communications, the Chinese are thinking about how to break the US system, rather than how to replicate it.
Now, after China were to theoretically retake Taiwan, there would be opportunities to build a larger Navy and Air Force with more offensive capability. But that's literally so far in the future it is barely worth thinking about. Especially when America is already losing two wars while spending a half trillion dollars a year.