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New Chinese gov't subsidies to promote green cars


17:47, May 23, 2013

BEIJING, May 23 (Xinhua) -- A new subsidy policy is intended to promote the use of energy-saving automobiles, according to a Thursday report by the China Securities Journal.

The previous policy, which expired at the end of last year, provided a subsidy of 50,000 yuan (8,151 U.S. dollars) to automakers for every hybrid vehicle sold, while 60,000 yuan was provided for every electric vehicle sold.

Miao Wei, head of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), said in March that a new subsidy policy for energy-saving cars will be issued in the first half of 2013.

The China Securities Journal report cited an MIIT official as saying that the policy will need final authorization from the State Council, or China's cabinet, after several government departments pass a draft version of the policy.

Li Weili, chief of the manufacturing division under the State Information Center, said the new policy is expected to last until 2015 at least.

He said detailed provisions regarding subsidies for electric cars will likely be implemented before the end of June 2013, although provisions related to hybrid vehicles may come out later.

Standards for the evaluation of hybrid vehicle energy consumption have yet to be created, which has postponed the creation of special subsidies for hybrid vehicles based on how much fuel they save, Li added.

The MIIT has shown a tendency to support hybrid vehicles with lower energy consumption, which has led many automakers to boost research and development for such vehicles.

Ling Tianjun, chief engineer of green vehicles at the Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (SAIC), one of China's four largest auto groups, said SAIC has started selling hybrid cars at lower prices with the help of subsidies totaling over 100,000 yuan.

Chery, one of China's largest private automotive enterprises, has decided to spend more on electric vehicle research, the report said.

The MIIT, together with Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Science and Technology, announced a program to encourage innovation in green vehicle technology in September 2012.

But Duan Zhihui, Chery's chief hybrid vehicle engineer, said the three-year time limit for the new subsidies may cause auto companies to rush their research and development in order to avoid missing the opportunity to receive the subsidies.

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