Beijing to cut number of license plates
Beijing will reduce the number of license plates it gives out for new cars by one-third to ease traffic congestion and pollution.
The announcement came as it emerged that people are buying struggling small businesses that hold vehicle registrations to avoid having to enter the capital’s license plate lottery.
Companies and individuals must take part in a monthly draw to register a new vehicle, with a total of 150,000 plates up for grabs every year; 90,000 for gas-powered vehicles and 60,000 for new-energy vehicles.
However, from 2018, only 100,000 will be available per year, the city’s transport commission said.
The aim is to limit the number of cars on the capital’s roads to 6.3 million by 2020. At the end of last year, the number stood at 5.62 million.
At the latest lottery, held on Tuesday, just one in every 754 entrants received a plate.
Facing the slim hope of getting a license, some people have bought companies that own car plates. A source, who did not want to be identified, said someone could buy a company holding a license plate for $27,700.