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"I believe that to meet the challenges of our times, human beings will have to develop a greater sense of universal responsibility. It is the foundation for world peace."

China on motor vehicle selling binge in Tibet

December 24, 2009

(, Dec 22, 2009) 

While Chinese and global scientists
have expressed serious concern at the more than double the global
average rise in temperatures on the Tibetan Plateau, the world?s ?third
pole?, the Chinese government is more concerned about selling more
environmentally destructive motor vehicles in the region. China has been
pursuing a policy of encouraging automobile consumption to tackle the
global financial crunch, thus resulting in an auto-purchasing craze in
Tibet, reported China?s official Xinhuanet news service Dec 21.

The report said the Tibet Autonomous Region had 195,070 motor vehicles
by the end of Nov?09. It said that capital Lhasa had 92,000 vehicles on
Dec 1, with the number of private cars reaching 70,000, an increase of
11,000 over the same period in 2008. The total number of vehicles in
Lhasa is expected to top 100,000 this year, the report said.

The overwhelming majority of these cars are obviously owned by Chinese
settlers, officials and entrepreneurs since they greatly dominate the
population in the cities and towns, which are home to less than 20
percent of the region?s Tibetan population.

The report did cite authorities as saying they were now pursuing a
policy of "sending vehicles to the countryside" to further increase
motor vehicle sales. China?s online Tibet news service Dec
21 cited authorities as saying the proportion of car buying among
farmers and herdsmen was increasing, although no hard figures were given.

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