China says production of green vehicles is surging this year

BEIJING - Chinese government policies are sparking a surge in the production of new energy vehicles including electric and hybrid cars, state news agency Xinhua said on Sunday.

In the first seven months of this year, production of such vehicles rose 280 per cent from a year earlier to 25,946, Xinhua said, citing a statement from the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.

Output of pure electric passenger cars jumped nearly 700 per cent from a year earlier to 13,829 units, and for plug-in hybrid passenger cars 10 times to 5,027 units, the report said.

For commercial vehicles, output for pure electric vehicles rose by 46 per cent, and by 60 per cent for plug-in hybrids, it added.

China has set an ambitious target of putting 5 million electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles on the country's roads by 2020, part of Beijing's efforts to fight pollution and cut reliance on oil imports.

The government has unveiled a series of measures to help the industry, including tax breaks and subsidies for purchases of such vehicles.