(Yicai Global) Nov. 13 -- The government does not need to significantly subsidize shared-car services directly or indirectly, Cheng Shidong, the director of the urban traffic office of the National Development and Reform Commission's Institute of Comprehensive Transportation said at the 2017 Global Future Mobility Forum & International Exhibition.
"It is a public transport means that maximizes the efficiency of urban residents' traveling," Cheng said. "To this end, the incentives for shared-cars services offered by the government will not be much, due to the fact that these services do not solve or reduce traffic jams."
Authorities are incentivizing shared autos and shared bikes differently, he said. Promoting shared-car services with free parking lots and in other ways would amount to funding car-based travel for the rich with taxpayers' money, Cheng said.
The government will define penalties for regulatory violations and establish user information systems for shared-vehicle services to push businesses to optimize the quality of their services, said Cheng.
Shared-car firms' biggest rivals are online car-hailing services and taxies, and they are more convenient, Cheng said. Shared-car companies face challenges as shared autos are not so cost competitive, and their users must pay for parking, he said.
"Shared-vehicle services will see rapid growth, but they are less likely to boom," Cheng said. They may not explode the way that ride-hailing and bike-sharing services did, he said.