Thanks to increased government support and favorable market conditions, new energy automobile sales in China have continued to grow at an impressive rate. In his assessment, China Association of Automobile Manufacturers Deputy Secretary General Dong Yang predicts production and sales capacities for new energy vehicles to triple this year. Over 50,000 new energy automobiles are expected to be produced and sold in the country this year.
The government has taken several steps to promote development of the new energy vehicle industry in China. Last month the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), Ministry of Finance and three other government departments announced policies mandating that relevent bodies purchase a certain number of new energy vehicles for official use. Soon after, the State Council also issued recommendation guidelines on how to further increase the usage of new energy vehicles. The NDRC also issued an announcement on revising electricity prices for new energy vehicles.
Then earlier this month, the Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Industry and Information Technology announced legislation that allowed buyers of designated new energy vehicles to be exempt from paying the vehicle purchase taxes for vehicles purchased between September of this year and the end of 2017. The MIIT and State Administration of Taxation later released the list of vehicles exempt from the tax. The legislation is the fourth of its kind to be announced since the beginning of the year.
Experts in the industry point out that the largest obstacles hindering the development of the new energy vehicle market lie in high vehicle prices, lack of required infrastructure and protectionist regional policies. In particular, the differing regional policies have led to totally different lists of vehicle models eligible for subsidies, which in turn led to uneven development of the country's new energy vehicle market.
Industry Analyst Jia Xinguang commented that the government has displayed considerable resolve to promote the new energy vehicle market through its recent wave of policies. These policies are not only beneficial to manufacturing enterprises, but are also helpful to the industry as a whole. However Mr. Jia also voiced his concerns about problems with infrastructure, such as electric charging posts, that the country still has, adding that policies aimed at resolving these issues are of considerable importance.