The municipal transport commission is working with several other government agencies to bring in effect a new monthly limit on car registrations for the next few years, said Rong Jun, spokesman for the commission. (Agencies)
The new limit that will be effective from 2014 will be announced in late November, Jun told a press briefing.
Today's decision to reduce the car registrations is the second of its kind by the city which already restricted its car sales by issuing only 20,000 car plates in auction every month.
According to a new five-year (2013-2017) clean air action plan, the total number of vehicles in the city will be restricted to around six million by the end of 2017.
The moves follow a report by a research team from the Chinese Academy of Sciences which revealed that vehicle exhaust fumes are among Beijing's top sources of air pollution, contributing to 22.2 percent of PM 2.5 particles in the city, exceeding the figure for industrial emissions.
Vehicles in the city are considered a major contributor to Beijing's smoggy skies in recent years. Beijing started to cap the number of new cars that could be registered annually in 2011 to 2.40 lakh, about one-third of the number registered in 2010.
The city had 5.35 million vehicles at the end of July, according to figures from the Beijing Traffic Management Bureau.
In August, the municipal transport commission received about 1.6 million new car license applications. One out of 80 applicants got car purchase permits as only 20,000 new license plates are now issued each month.
Potential car buyers are required to participate in a license plate lottery. The limit has drawn complaints from many residents due to the slim chance of getting a car plate and a further cut could trigger more backlashes.
The move also had an adverse impact on the flourishing automobile industry in China as several cities including Shanghai have imposed restrictions on car sales. Currently, cars in Beijing are banned from roads for one workday a week.
The municipal transport commission is working with several other government agencies to bring in effect a new monthly limit on car registrations for the next few years, said Rong Jun, spokesman for the commission.