China To Ban Manufacture of Fossil Fuel Vehicles
China’s National Development and Reform Commission recently proposed new auto investment regulations to ban the manufacture of fossil fuel-burning vehicles in the country.
A push towards ceasing all combustion engine production isn’t a new idea in China. There are been rules and regulations in place since last year to encourage automakers to be proactive before a hard deadline is in place, with discussions ongoing long before 2017. Reports show the proposal aims to encourage investment in electric and alternative energy vehicles from existing automakers, while opening up the Chinese market for new vehicle manufacturers focusing on alternative fuels. The government plans to support the changed manufacturing landscape by lending its resources to companies that:
- Invest in smart vehicles and energy efficient vehicles
- Focus on battery recycling
- Utilize technology for advanced manufacturing techniques and equipment
China’s move to ban fossil fuel vehicles falls in line with the United Kingdom and France, both of which intend to cease production of traditional cars by 2040. Individual companies, such as General Motors and Ford, have been developing electric cars in China for some time now. The Chinese government is also following suit of one of Chinese-owned Volvo, which has vowed to cease manufacturing on fossil fuel vehicles as early as 2019.
The benefits of moving away from fossil fuels have been well documented and debated, but China’s electric vehicle push is as much of an economic play as it is an environmental one. By setting timelines for the electric shift, they’re encouraging new investment and growth from foreign companies that rely on China to give them a foothold in Asia’s vast vehicle markets. Electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla recently announced it will open a plant in Shanghai. Expect more news of this nature to start coming out as we move closer and closer to a fossil fuel-less Chinese vehicle market.