Reports in China say the country is set to pass the US and become the world’s largest market for new energy vehicles this year, as volumes surge helped by government incentives.
“The market for new energy vehicles is moving from demonstration to growth, and the Chinese market is likely to be the world’s largest this year,” said Dong Yang, vice chairman of the country’s automobile guild, speaking to China Daily.
The China Daily reported that in the first seven months of this year, sales of new energy vehicles (plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles) increased by 2.6 times year on year to nearly 90,000 despite a weak overall market. Production exceeded 95,500, also more than double last year’s level.
Alarmed by deteriorated air quality in cities across China, governments at central and local level are introducing incentives such as lower taxes to encourage take-up. In Beijing, for example, a fresh round of “special treatment” for new energy vehicles including free parking and exemption from number plate traffic controls have been introduced.
The report added that by 2020, China plans to have five million new energy vehicles on its roads as well as 4.5 million charging stations.
The number of pure electric cars and plug-in hybrids produced domestically should top 1 million by 2020, according to the “Made in China 2025” plan for Chinese manufacturing released by the cabinet in May.