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The US - China Electric Vehicles Market - An Outlook for 2016 and Beyond

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【Summary】The US is the biggest developed nation. And China is the biggest developing country. With more common experiences and information sharing between the two largest EV markets in the world, US and China should achieve greater new energy cooperation.

Original Lydia    Sep 25, 2016 5:00 PM PT
The US - China Electric Vehicles Market - An Outlook for 2016 and Beyond
Lydia Hu

By Lydia Hu

SAN FRANCISCO, California — At a recent major energy conference held here last week, Mr. David Sandalow, one of the main speakers, showed attendees a beautiful photo. It depicted an overlook of the Huangpu River and massive skyscrapers located along the Pudong peninsula. Yet when he first went to China, Shanghai didn't look like it does now. You see, his first trip was back in 1983. Sandalow's presentation began with his impression of Shanghai from many years ago.

Sandalow was the keynote speaker at the US - China New Energy Economy Forum held on September 21 through September 22, 2016, at Julie Morgan Ballroom, which attracted scores of experts and entrepreneurs in the energy sector from both countries.

The United States and China are competitors, rivals and world leaders. The US is the biggest developed nation. And China is the biggest developing country. With more common experiences and information sharing between the two largest EV markets in the world, US and China should achieve greater new energy cooperation. This remark was stated by the former Undersecretary of the US Department of Energy.

Sandalow mentioned that in order to encourage consumers to purchase electric vehicles, US policy makers have launched the Federal Tax Credit, State tax credit, rebates, ZEV (Zero Emission Vehicles) program, HOV lanes, Federal loan guarantees and other measures. The Chinese government also launched policies such as the NEW industry development plans, purchase subsidies, and license plate preference to support new energy vehicles under a national strategic initiative. In the meantime, the US is facing challenges such as dealer law (Tesla issue), road guarantee charge, subsidies that may be declining, safety issues and the startup wipeout in China today.

Although US and China approach the problem differently, the difficulties they face are similar. Besides the dwindling government incentives, the EV industry needs to figure out ways to make EV more economically sensible to both consumers and themselves. Sandalow answered the question about how could the US and China EV industries cooperate to make EV more economically approachable to customers in both markets.

From the view of an automakers, Mr. Gang Zheng, the CEO of BJEV, Beijing Electric Vehicle Co., Ltd. (BAIC BJEV), a subsidiary of BAIC, and who is a developer of new energy vehicles in China, shared some his thoughts at the forum.
China has made electric vehicles a strategic initiative. This is a part of its push to take the lead in automotive technology in the EV industry in China.  In 2015, China electric car sales surged and had already crossed 300,000 while expecting to reach 400,000 by the end of 2016. All EV automakers want to take over China's big market in regard to high-performance electric vehicles. BJEV put a lot of funding focused on R & D. One new center is the  Nokia factory located in the Yizhuang district of Beijing. It was financed by BEJV to support Tesla, GM and other brand model's development and research according to Zheng. Nokia's needs to keep in mind the sensitives to changes in the environment.

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The global economy is shaping the future of the world. Not surprisingly, it is also deeply impacting the automotive industry. Didi chuxing is a unicorn representative of this evolving industry. After Didi chuxing merged with Uber China, the market share for share riding reached almost 87 percent. Zheng said these market changes led them to have a clearer view about certain factors. For example, automobile customers are quietly turniing from traditional B2C to B2B. Upgrading the auto market will involve deeper integration with the Internet. Other terms mentioned were the catching Industry 4.0, Sharing-Economy and double-end resolution.

Zheng shared the layout of the BJEV product service line up. BJEV divided its business division focusing on part-time & car sharing, charge station installation and express business cooperation. He believes that EV are the trend of the whole auto industry, and that China will be leading this industry-wide revolution.

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E-mobility, Plug share, Policy making processes and other items were discussed by the panel.

Please check for additional information on the Silicon Valley Future Car Radio Show presented by Futurecar.com.

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