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August 9, 2017

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China gives nod to car-sharing services

China will support the country’s booming car-sharing industry and standardize its development, according to official guidelines released yesterday.

Unlike traditional car-rental services, car-sharing services take advantage of new technologies such as global-positioning and mobile Internet.

Such services improve user experience and offer an alternative for urban commuting, easing growing demand for private cars and parking space, according to guidelines released jointly by the Ministry of Transport and the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development.

Car-sharing firms should improve their services by checking the identity of users carefully and optimizing the supply of cars by using big data analysis, according to the guidelines.

They should also ensure the safety condition of the cars, and protect private information and user deposits.

Companies are encouraged to use a credit-based model to evaluate the reliability of users instead of requiring them to pay guarantee deposits.

Shopping centers and large residential areas are encouraged to offer their public parking lots for shared-cars, while incentives will also likely be given to such cars for on-street parking, according to the guidleines.

Companies are also encouraged to use new energy vehicles as shared-cars, with support given for charging facilities of NEVs.

The guidelines followed the release of similar rules on bike-sharing services last week, which aim to help development of the industry.

China’s sharing economy has been rising rapidly recently, with bike-sharing companies such as ofo and Mobike attracting overseas investments.

The country’s sharing economy witnessed a total transaction volume of 3.45 trillion yuan (US$514 billion) last year, more than doubling that of 2015, according to a report released by the State Information Center in March.



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