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Industry trade groups and market research firms have produced various theories to explain why the market suddenly ran out of steam. But a website tracking peer-to-peer lending in China has provided one plausible factor.
Limits on housing market investments in China have real estate developers looking to the EV market for new money-making opportunities.
Beijing realizes that young domestic automakers can never beat global giants with traditional combustion-engine technology. The government has therefore bet on EVs, which it believes provide local companies with an opportunity to leapfrog rivals. Will the government's wishes come true? Probably not.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang's government has allowed BMW and VW Group to gain control over local ventures ahead of their foreign rivals, giving the German automakers a big boost in the world's largest vehicle market.
The Chinese auto market is relatively healthy. Foreign automakers in China have had only one major challenge: how to ramp up electrified vehicle output. Now they have another headache.
Didi Chuxing, the Chinese ride-hailing giant, is partnering with 31 auto industry companies to develop models for shared mobility and new standards for electrified vehicles.
The Chinese government will phase out restrictions on foreign ownership of joint ventures with domestic automakers. But a complete separation will be hard for nearly all global brands that manufacture in China.
A complete separation will be hard for some global brands that manufacture in China, and it may not be desirable for major global automakers such as General Motors.
It's probably unrealistic to expect imports to account for a sizable portion of vehicle sales in China.
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