China approves blueprint for green vehicles

April 19th, 2012 - 12:17 am ICT by IANS  

Beijing, April 18 (IANS) The Chinese government Wednesday approved a guideline for development of new energy-saving vehicles to ease pressure on the environment.

Electric vehicles will be prioritized in the transformation of China’s auto industry, the government said after a meeting of the State Council Wednesday.

The meeting, presided by Prime Minister Wen Jiabao, noted that the country’s electric and hybrid vehicles will reach 500,000 units by 2015 and five million by 2020, Xinhua reported.

China overtook the US to become the world’s largest auto market in 2009 after selling 13.64 million vehicles that year.

Both car sales and production volume witnessed astonishing growth in 2009 and 2010 before slowing to a 2.4-percent growth rate in 2011.

The country still remains the world’s largest auto market, although in the first quarter of this year, sales fell slightly year-on-year due to a high comparison basis and surging oil prices, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers.

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