EnergyWatch

China is said to weigh opening up to foreign electric carmakers

China could completely revise its auto industry policy by opening up its free-trade zones to international electric car manufacturers.

Photo: /ritzau/Niels Hougaard/

China is discussing a plan to allow foreign carmakers to set up wholly owned electric-vehicle businesses in its free-trade zones in a major revision of a fundamental principle governing the country’s auto industry policy since the 1990s, according to company officials briefed on the matter.

The plan, which is subject to change as a final decision hasn't been made, could be put in place as early as next year, the people said, asking not to be identified as the deliberations are private. If the policy takes effect, it would be a landmark departure from the existing rules, which require foreign automakers to set up joint ventures with local counterparts.

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