China Plans Charging Stations for 5 Million Plug-in Cars by 2020

China will add to subsidies aimed at speeding up the building of electric car recharging stations, targeting enough infrastructure to handle 5 million plug-in vehicles by 2020.

Aid for charging facilities will be expanded and local governments will be asked to disclose their favorable policies and incentive offers, the State Council said in guidelines posted on its website, without elaborating on specifics. Newly-built residential buildings should all have charging facilities or set aside space for them, the cabinet said.

The support measures follow Vice Premier Ma Kai pressing local governments to speed up charging infrastructure he said in May was a bottleneck hampering development of the industry. China has made the development of electric cars a strategic initiative as part of broader plans to lead in the automotive technology, curb pollution and reduce dependence on imported oil. Electric-car purchases have lagged behind government targets despite subsidies doled out to both automakers and consumers in part due to concerns about the lack of access to charging facilities.

China will unify charging standards, expand public charging facilities from urban areas to suburbs and encourage fuel stations to install chargers, the cabinet said. Government agencies should plan charging facilities on their own parking lots, according to the guidelines.

— With assistance by Tian Ying, and Jie Ma

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