Thursday, March 19, 2009

subsidies for energy-saving and new energy vehicles

Earlier this year, China announced new subsidies for energy-saving and new energy vehicles, including hybrids, EVs, and fuel cell vehicles. The announcement was covered widely in the media / blogosphere, for example Xinhua, Reuters, and China Car Times. I didn't get a chance to post about this last month; although I'm late now, I still think it's worth providing some commentary and more information.

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.

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...
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?

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.

1 comment:

BeyondGreen said...

There could be no better investment in America than to invest in America becoming energy independent! We need to utilize everything in out power to reduce our dependence on foreign oil including using our own natural resources. Create cheap clean energy, new badly needed green jobs and reduce our dependence on foreign oil.The high cost of fuel this past year seriously damaged our economy and society. The cost of fuel effects every facet of consumer goods from production to shipping costs. It costs the equivalent of 60 cents per gallon to charge and drive an electric car. If all gasoline cars, trucks, and SUV's instead had plug-in electric drive trains the amount of electricity needed to replace gasoline is about equal to the estimated wind energy potential of the state of North Dakota.We have so much available to us such as wind and solar. Let's spend some of those bail out billions and get busy harnessing this energy. Create cheap clean energy, badly needed new jobs and reduce our dependence on foreign oil. What a win-win situation that would be for our nation at large! There is a really good new book out by Jeff Wilson called The Manhattan Project of 2009 Energy Independence Now.

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