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China issues auto trade-in program for 2012

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BEIJING, June 13 (Xinhua) -- China's Ministry of Finance on Wednesday issued an old-for-new trade-in auto program for 2012, a bid to boost the sluggish auto market and facilitate its emissions-reduction efforts.

According to the statement jointly issued by the ministry and the Ministry of Commerce, the government will offer subsidies ranging from 11,000 yuan (1,746 U.S. dollars) to 18,000 yuan for the renovation of used passenger vehicles in rural areas, city buses and heavy trucks.

The program was first launched in July 2009. Data from the Ministry of Commerce showed that China handed out 6.41 billion yuan in subsidies to new car buyers under the program in 2010, which spurred 49.6 billion yuan in new auto sales.

Affected by the removal of government incentives and an economic slump, China's automobile sales rose just 2.45 percent year on year to 18.5 million units last year, marking the slowest growth in 13 years, according to data from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers.

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