The traffic clogged Chinese capital Beijing Saturday conducted its second round of vehicle license lottery, from which 17,600 individuals and 4,000 offices were awarded plates.
Competition became stiffer this month as only six in some 100 individual applicants Saturday got a chance to buy a new car, while last month nine in 100 people were awarded a precious license plate.
The individual winners were drawn from February's 292,280 applicants, said a spokesman with the municipal transport commission.
Altogether 4,000 office applicants -- from a total of 8,727 -- also received license plates from Saturday's drawing. It was the first drawing for office applicants since the city put in place the scheme at the end of last year, as lottery for offices was only held every two months.
According to the scheme, applicants who failed to win the first lottery were automatically placed in the following lottery, however they will have to reapply if they still fail to win by Dec. 31 this year, said the spokesman.
Beijing launched the new system on Jan. 1 to control car numbers and curtail worsening traffic jams in the populous metropolis, under which only 240,000 will be issued this year, about a third of the number registered in 2010.
Data from the commission shows the number of cars in Beijing more than quadrupled from 1 million in 1997 to 4.76 million in 2010.
Due to the purchase restriction, sales revenue of Beijing's auto market in 2011 might shrink by 60 billion yuan (about 9.1 billion U.S. dollars), the municipal commerce commission forecasted earlier this month.
Besides limiting car purchases, the municipal government has also introduced higher parking fees in downtown areas and stricter enforcement of traffic rules to ease the traffic woes.