China has backflipped on its move to slash subsidies for electric, fuel-cell, and hybrid vehicle buyers.
The Chinese State Council had initially planned to phase out the subsidies offered on cars classed as ‘new energy vehicles’ by the end of 2020, but has this week announced plans to extend them until at least 2022.
China is reportedly concerned its electric and hybrid vehicle market will shrink if the subsidies are removed.
The subsidies have been in place since 2010. When they were introduced buyers could get up to $14,000 off their new car purchase, although Beijing has gradually scaled the amount of assistance back over the past decade.
Bloomberg reports the incentives could still be pared back in 2020, as the government looks to reduce the amount of money on offer and shrink the pool of eligible vehicles.
The rules could also be changed to favour Chinese-built vehicles with more than 300km of range, according to the Bloomberg report.
After becoming something of a global leader in the push to electrification, Chinese sales of new energy vehicles fell for the first time in 2019.