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Beijing Hopes To Quadruple New Energy Vehicles In 2015

A leading figure in China’s automobile industry has announced that Beijing plans to quadruple the number of new energy cars on its roads this year, by both expanding the development of charging infrastructure and the usage of such vehicles by the government.

Xu Heyi, chairman of state-owned automobile giant Beijing Automotive Group, revealed via China Central Television (CCTV) that this year Beijing’s municipal government aims to add at least 30,000 more new energy cars to the city’s fleet of vehicles.

If this figure is achieved, it would be equivalent to roughly three times the number of new energy vehicles currently running on Beijing’s roads, which according to official data is pegged at 10,499.

Xu Heyi’s announcement follows reports that Beijing’s municipal government would dramatically increase the quota allocated for the purchase of new energy vehicles by urban residents, a well as introduce other measures to spur consumer demand, including reduced road tolls and parking fees.

Given its status as the national capital in tandem with its rapidly worsening air pollution, Beijing was one of the earliest cities in China to promote the usage of new energy vehicles, which are defined officially as including 100% battery electric vehicles, hybrid electric vehicles (including plug-in hybrid electric vehicles), fuel cell electric vehicles, and vehicles that make use of alternative fuels.

These efforts have thus far been hampered, however, by an inadequate network of charging infrastructure, as well as the comparatively high cost of automobiles that run on alternative fuel sources.

In order to facilitate the development of charging infrastructure, Beijing’s municipal government unveiled a policy in February for the provision of an investment subsidy of 30% to any entities or individuals who build charging stations for public usage.

The municipal government has also indicated that it hopes to create an automobile charging network within the confines of Beijing’s sixth ring road that possesses an average service radius of five kilometers, by building public charging facilities in places including automobile repair and service shops, key commercial districts, freeway service areas and car parks.

In addition to developing the infrastructure to service electric cars, Xu Heyi also advocates increasing the usage of new energy vehicles by the government entities.

“The amount of time that public vehicles are in operation each day vastly exceeds that of private vehicles,” said Xu, pointing to the huge number of public buses, clean-up vehicles, and postal vans as well as taxis running on Beijing’s roads. “For this reason, I feel that it would be best to start in this area, vigorously promoting the usage [of new energy vehicles.]”

 
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Written By

is an Australian trade journalist and technical translator with a keen interest in trends and development in the global energy sector, and their ramifications for economic growth in the future. He spent most of the noughties as resident of the greater China region and is literate in both Mandarin and Classical Chinese. Marc’s avocational interests include distance running, French literature, economic history, European board games, and submission grappling.

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