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S. Korea to introduce new license plate for electric cars in Oct.

All Headlines 06:00 September 01, 2016

SEOUL, Sept. 1 (Yonhap) -- South Korea will introduce a new license plate for electric vehicles before the end of next month, the government said Thursday, in an apparent effort to further promote environmentally friendly cars.

The new license plate will be picked from four designs in a public vote that will last 10 days until next Thursday, according to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport.

"The government will decide which design will be used as a new license plate for electric cars in the popularity vote to be held between Sept. 1 and Sept. 11, and it will manufacture 100 license plates of the new design to be put to a test run on Jeju island before the end of October," the ministry said in a press release.

All four designs have already undergone recognition tests by unmanned traffic cameras.

This is important for surveillance reasons, but also for the convenience of electric car owners because currently they must stop and prove their car is in fact an electric vehicle to receive various benefits that will soon include a discount on highway tolls and at public parking lots.

The new license plate also comes amid government efforts to boost the number of environmentally friendly cars as part of efforts to tackle climate change.

As of end-2015, there were only about 2,800 electric vehicles in South Korea, but the commerce ministry plans to increase the number to over 50,000 in 2017.

Also, despite the low ratio of electric cars in the country, South Korea is fast becoming a leading producer of electric cars, exporting some 12,000 electric vehicles in 2015. The government plans to boost the number to nearly 200,000 by 2020.

bdk@yna.co.kr
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