Chinese local governments are trimming down on excess expenses as part of a revenue raising scheme, hoping to put an end to the misuse of and illegal purchase of official cars, which had been rife.
According to the Financial Times, local governments across the country were forced to sell their official cars amid an economic slowdown, bringing to light the underlying trend among officials using luxury cars with tinted windows and chauffeured sedans. Chinese officials are usually driven around in a black Audi A6 but Porsche, Maserati and a Toyota Land Cruiser were also included in the auctions. Some say that a slowing economy forced the auctions.
A local government expert at People’s University Beijing, Tao Ran, told the Financial Times, “it is a sign of the difficulties facing the city finances”. Wenzhou city, in the southeast, raised Rmb10.6 million ($1.7m) from 215 cars. Other cities, even poorer villages, are expected to follow suit.