The first time visitor would expect that Chinese branded cars would be everywhere in Shanghai, a city which is probably one of the first visited by overseas tourists, in fact the nations financial capital is more of a bastion of foreign brands due to many consumers opting to ‘buy good’ if they are going to buy a car at all. A license plate as of last month cost just over of 64,000RMB ($10,000USD), which is only a little less than what most Chinese cars cost, this month the Shanghai Municiple Government brought down the price by pushing more plates onto the market. In June 2012 prices lowered to 58,227RMB, the first time they have come down in several months, in total 9,500 plates were sold over the course of June.
Shanghai’s auctioning of license plates came into action relatively early when compared to other cities, plates were auctioned off in 2002 – long before cities such as Beijing began to introduce their own traffic busting policies. Beijing currently allows the sales of 20,000 new license plates each month through a lottery system, although the government there are mulling over the idea of auctioning plates to the highest bidder.