Government of China encourages the purchase of electric vehicles, in a bid to tackle air pollution.
China’s local and central government urged its population to turn to electric vehicles (EV), in an attempt to contain the country’s air pollution, on October 26, 2014. The aim is to minimize the number of gasoline-powered vehicles on the road.
In September 2014, following the release of many EV models in the country by automakers, the central government took initiative against the rising air pollution by introducing a new tax-exemption system for eco-friendly vehicles. Local governments in the country too have followed suits through various subsidies.
The government had imposed a tax on new car purchases, amounting to 10 per cent of the cost price, which was waved off for plug-in hybrid vehicles and fuel cell-powered vehicles, lowering the market price of most EV models.
Certain local governments in China also offer incentives to consumers who purchase eco-friendly cars, aiming at limiting the purchase of regular cars, apart from reducing traffic congestion and air pollution.
However, in order for the population to adopt the use of EVs, there needs to be supportive charging infrastructure in place, which is currently inadequate. EV batteries have to be recharged for use, and with various traffic issues in cities, there need to be an apt and consistent number of recharging facilities available for the public.
Moreover, in larger urban areas, most people reside in high-rises, with limited independent houses, making recharging difficult for EV users.
Currently, the Shanghai city government aims to build 6,000 high-speed recharging facilities by 2015 end, while Beijing will get 1,000 facilities by the end of 2014.
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