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Beijing Lifts Ban on Electric Bicycles To Ease Traffic Congestion

Removal of the ban came as pressure mounts on city administrators to tackle horrible traffic congestion, air pollution and possible fuel supply, caused to a large extent by a rapidly growing number of cars on the road. PHOTO: First snow in Beijing Dec. 31, 2005, courtesy of China Daily.

Published: 01-Jan-2006

Chinese capital removes ban on electric bicycles from the beginning of 2006 to ease city traffic, which becomes increasingly congested due to fast rising numbers of cars on the road.

A circular of the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau said from January 4, electric bikes that have met national standards and entered an approved list are officially allowed to take to the road after being registered with the city's traffic administration.

The city stopped registering electric bikes from August 2002 after the number reached tens of thousands, citing the reason that used batteries of such bikes are hard to dispose of and may pollute the environment.

The point has been hotly debated by the public. Electric bike producers argued a sound system for retrieving and disposing of used batteries has been established. Beijing citizens generally favor lifting the ban, saying such bikes are very convenient means of transportation.

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