Santa Rosa-based EV maker ZAP has signed a deal with Shanghai officials to provide charging stations, battery swap facilities and maintenance depots for the city's commercial Yangpu district.

Zap will also develop a pilot electric vehicle eco-city programne involving the use of its vehicles in Yangpu's bus, taxi and government fleets and sales and marketing offices and R&D centres will be located there, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

Jim Wunderman, president of the Bay Area Council, called it "a major milestone for the Bay Area's electric vehicle industry".

Earlier this year, Zap acquired a 51% stake in Jonway Automobile, a Chinese car and motorcycle manufacturer, in a US$120m deal approved by the Chinese government in October.

The combined company, called Zap Jonway, is planning to ramp up production next year, primarily at a 3.6m sq ft plant in China's eastern coastal province of Zhejiang. Other assets acquired by Zap include 500 Jonway dealerships across the country.

The report noted China aims to have 1m hybrids and EVs on the road by 2015, and is investing upward of $15bn in the sector over the next 10 years. While some estimates are more conservative, global bank HSBC sees China's share of the world's EV market vaulting from 2.7% this year to 35% by 2020.