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1,000 new-energy cars to have trial run in 10 cities

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Shanghai, October 24, 2008: ( As part of its "863" initiative that was launched in December 2007, the Chinese government is to kick off a "1,000 new-energy cars in 10 cities" in the next few months, and has announced to foster the development of charging stations for this operation, said today.

At an August 2008 summit meeting focusing on electric cars, Wan Gang, the Chairman of the Ministry of Science and Technology indicated that over a three-year period the Ministry would develop a large-scale pilot project in 10 or more cities to put 1,000 hybrid, fuel-cell and all-electric vehicles on the road in each of those cities and provide the necessary infrastructure for the project.

Electric vehicle (EV)-oriented automakers, now only in a very small number, are required to reach the annual capacity of 500 new-energy vehicles by late 2009 and their total annual output should hit 10,000 units by 2010 for every of the designated city to have enough EVs for trial operation. At the same time, the vehicle standards, quality and stability will be strictly controlled to meet the new requirements for city-use EVs.

The first batch of Chinese cities for the EV operation include Dalian, Shanghai, Wuhan, Shenzhen, Chingqing, Changsha, with Beijing, Tianjin and Hangzhou as the immediate candidates. More will be chosen in the coming months. These cities will have the large-scale trial run of EVs and hybrid-powered vehicles in the next few years.

To date, the Chinese government has invested at least 800 million yuan ($117.3 million) in developing the Chinese EV industry. The role of large state-owned enterprises is helping to catalyze this development. BYD Auto, Wanxiang Group, Shenzhen Wuzhoulong Motors are speeding up their EV production and also urging the related infrastructure construction.

In June 2007 the State Power Grid Corporation issued a plan that provided for the conversion of a certain number of public transportation vehicles, taxis, waste disposal trucks, among others, to EVs on a trial basis in certain cities and provinces. The plan also included the development of a nationwide network of charging stations.

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