First of all, since I like to reference original sources whenever possible, I was able to find relevant info posted both on the MOF website as well as MOST's. The MOF notice is only a brief summary, but the MOST page seems to be the complete announcement.
The lead of the Reuters story is an accurate and concise summary of the program:
SHANGHAI (Reuters) - China's central government will subsidize purchases of clean-energy vehicles for public fleets in 13 cities to help the automobile industry develop green technology, the official Xinhua news agency reported.A key point here is that the subsidies are for public fleets only. As far as I can tell, Chinese consumers are not eligible to receive these subsidies, although both the Xinhua and China Car Times stories describe them as such. Unless I am misreading the MOST announcement or there is another subsidy program that I am not aware of?
The trial scheme will promote the use of electric, hybrid and fuel-cell vehicles by public transport operators, taxi firms and postal and sanitary services in cities such as Beijing and Shanghai...
In any case, some technical details of the program are as follows:
- For small passenger cars (乘用车) and light-duty commercial vehicles (轻型商务车), the subsidies start for new energy vehicles which have at least a 5% fuel economy improvement as compared with traditional vehicles.
- For buses (客车), the subsides start at 10% improvement.
- The actual amounts of the subsidies (per vehicle) are given in Appendix Tables 1 and 2, which I have translated here:
One huge question I still don't know the answer to: how much is the total program worth? (No total is given in the MOST document.) The Xinhua story includes this paragraph:
China is keen to encourage the use and manufacture of new energy vehicles as its fast growing vehicle population is putting high pressure on environment protection and energy-saving targets. The central government pledged to provide 10 billion yuan (1.46 billion U.S. dollars) in the next three years to auto makers to help upgrade their technology and develop alternative energy vehicles.But this is confusing - is this 10 billion RMB for this program? Or another program (I'm thinking the 863 program)? More details as I learn them.