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June 9, 2012

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Electric car charging sites start to spring up

THE government has started building charging stations along major expressways in Shanghai and neighboring provinces to encourage the use of pollution-free electric vehicles.

The lack of a more complete battery-charging network for the public is a big barrier hampering development of electric cars and buses, according to the transport authorities.

The local government said it's planned that by end of 2015, 11 battery charging stations will be completed and put into service on six major provincial expressways in Shanghai and neighboring Zhejiang and Jiangsu provinces.

The city's traffic authorities said two facilities have been completed along the local section of the Shanghai-Kunming G60 Expressway and are ready for trial operation after connection to the national power grid.

Highway management officials said a single charger is capable of servicing about 50 electric cars a day. The fee to be charged has not been announced, however.

China plans to offer more financial support to the electric-powered vehicle industry and build charging facilities quickly, according to a new industrial outline released by national authorities in April.

Under a blueprint on energy efficiency and new-energy vehicles approved in a State Council meeting chaired by Premier Wen Jiabao, China is aiming for cumulative sales of 500,000 electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids by 2015, further lifting the goal to 5 million units by 2020.

China has set the use of electric vehicles as key strategy for its automotive industry and is urging enhanced research and development to build itself into the world's leading producer of green cars, batteries and primary spare parts.


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