Vehicle license plate applications filed in Beijing on January 1 came to more than double the number to be issued each month under the city’s new quota system, Bloomberg reported, citing state media. The Beijing government said on December 23 that it would set a monthly quota of 20,000 new non-transferable vehicle licenses as part of efforts to ease traffic. The licenses will be distributed through a lottery run on the 26th day of each month. On the program’s first day, 53,549 online applications were made for the January lottery. Beijing already bans cars from roads on certain days of the week depending on the last digit of the license plate. In restricting the number of new car licenses, it is following a practice that has been implemented in Shanghai since 1986. Separately, the central government has ended subsidies for car purchases in rural areas and raised the sales tax on small vehicles to 10% from 7.5%.
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