Beijing to Offer Electric-Car Incentives Soon, Official Says

Beijing will match a 60,000-yuan ($9,640) central government subsidy for electric vehicles, accelerating efforts to spur sales and reduce smog in one of the most heavily polluted cities in China.

The Beijing government will soon announce measures that include the financial aid, which will be on top of the amount offered by the central government, Chen Guiru, deputy head of the local government arm in charge of alternative-energy-vehicle development, said in an interview today at a conference in Hainan, China.

China, home to 16 of the world’s most polluted cities, is bolstering incentives for electric vehicles as deliveries fall behind levels needed for the country to reach cumulative deliveries of 500,000 units by 2015 and 5 million by 2020 -- as targeted by the government. Sales aren’t catching on because of the lack of infrastructure and as electric cars are too expensive, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

As a further incentive, EV owners will avoid having to buy a license plate via an auction in Beijing as required for regular gasoline cars, Chen said.

The Beijing government also plans to help fund purchases of plug-in hybrids, Chen said. The local government also plans to increase its fleet of electric buses, taxis and street cleaners to about 5,000 units over the next few months, compared with about 3,000 now, he said.

Beijing put four subway routes into operation late last year, bringing the number of lines in the Chinese capital to 16. The city, with a population of more than 20 million, already caps the number of new auto registrations and limits the use of private vehicles on designated days based on their license plate numbers. The government is planning to build a road-congestion charging system, the city’s transport commission said in August.

— With assistance by Tian Ying

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