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Beijing Will Have 3 Mln Motor Vehicles in May
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With 1,110 motor vehicles taking to the capital's roads every day since January 1, the number of vehicles in Beijing will hit the three million mark sometime in May, according to an official with the municipal traffic management bureau.

Bureau director Song Jianguo said that the municipality currently has 2.925 million motor vehicles, and the number will reach 3.5 million before the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Experts warn that congestion is an increasingly intractable problem in Beijing, and are talking up the public transit option.

Beijing will provide subsidies totaling 1.3 billion yuan (about US$166 million) to bus companies this year, which offer across-the-board discounts to over nine million commuters.

The measure will give public transit a distinct price advantage, encourage people to use the public transit system and help ease the city's traffic gridlock, according to Li Jianguo, deputy director of the municipal transportation committee.

Beijing has taken the lead in China and imposed Euro-III car emission standards, but exhaust fumes emitted by its motor vehicles, including two million private cars, remains one of the primary sources of pollution in the capital.

About 300,000 heavily-polluting vehicles will be taken off the city's roads in 2007.

(Xinhua News Agency March 2, 2007)

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