Cao Gangchuan, male, Han nationality, is a native of Wugang, Henan Province. He was born in 1935, joined the PLA in 1954, and joined the CPC in 1956. He holds the military rank of general.
Cao spent the early part of his career in the Military Affairs Department of the PLA. In 1996 he became minister of the Commission of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense. In the late 1990's he held Party and senior management positions in the PLA's General Armament Department.
Cao Gangchuan was a member of the 16th CPC Central Committee. He served as State Councilor of the State Council and Minister of the Ministry of National Defense from 2003-2008.