CRI Beijing Residents Rush to Register New Cars 0104

时间:2011-01-05 17:24  764次点击 | 0 关注
The website for applications, www.bjhjyd.gov.cn, received nearly 60,000 online submissions as of 11 am on Sunday.

The number is almost one quarter of the total license plates to be issued for the whole year.

The application frenzy shocked many people, including Ma Lin, who wants to buy a car this year, but is not eligible for the application since she does not have a drivers license yet.

Ma Lin says she did not expect so many people would submit applications on the first day of the program. Moreover, she already expects it would be extremely difficult to get a license plate.

The municipal government of Beijing announced late last month that it planned to adopt a lottery system to issue non-transferable license plates.

That was Zhou Zhengyu, Deputy Secretary-General of the municipal government, announcing at a press briefing that the government will only issue 240,000 new license plates for 2011. That is only one-third of 2010's total.

According to the plan, one driver may only register one car.

Eligible individuals include local residency permit holders and foreigners who have lived in the city for at least a year. Residents without Beijing residence permit must provide proof they have paid social security fees and income taxes for five consecutive years.

The application website highlights that anyone who provides false information will be banned from applying for three years and must assume legal responsibility.

Applications can be made on the website anytime before midnight on the 8th of each month. After submitting their applications, candidates may receive a code, and their qualifications will be examined. The lottery opens on the 26th of each month. Those who fail to be picked up will be transferred automatically for the next round.

Beijing's congestion has worsened in recent years. There were 4.8 million vehicles on the capital's roads as of December 29th, which was 700,000 more than at the beginning of 2010.

There were only 2.6 million vehicles in 2005 in Beijing.

Last year, Beijing tied with Mexico City as the city with the world's worst commute. To alleviate congestion, Beijing has already barred cars from the road on specific days each week depending on the last digit of the license plate. Drivers with vehicles not registered in the city would also need to apply for a permit before entering the capital.

The central government also raised the sales tax on small vehicles to 10 percent this year as it ends measures to support auto sales.

Although many analysts claim the vehicle sales in Beijing may fall as much 70 percent this year, the demand for vehicles may not drop as much.

As Ma Lin says, her family needs a car now that she has a baby. A car will make transport a bit easier. So she will keep applying for the plate until she gets one.

For CRI, I'm Wang Jing.