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Zap is poising itself to take advantage of China's extension of its electric vehicle incentive program. The government will be offering rebates on EVs, forgiving sales taxes and licensing fees, installing EV charging infrastructure and other measures to encourage adoption of zero-emission vehicles beyond 2015, through the year 2020. In response, electric vehicle company Zap and its partner Jonway Autos are decreasing production of gasoline-powered vehicles to make more EVs. It plans to increase production of its two EV production lines from 50 to 100 vehicles per day each, as well as positioning certain models for larger-scale production. Zap hopes customers will make use of rebates of up to $20,000 from the central government, plus local EV incentives. In October, Zap and Jonway will unveil new SUV and minivans that they intend to offer as less-than-gasoline- and zero-ownership-cost and vehicles under the umbrella of China's incentives. Read more in the press release below.

Tesla Model S owner David Zygmont shares tips for taking cross-country road trips in an electric vehicle in a two-part podcast. David talks about his two-week road trip in his Tesla, and how he managed to make the most of charging his vehicle. One of his tools is the site EV Trip Planner. He also shares advice on overnight charging while staying at hotels. If you're thinking of going on an adventure in your EV, you should check this out to gain some valuable insights into the experience. Listen to part one of the podcast at EV Parade, and part two at Teslarati.

Oil companies paid federal income taxes of just 11.7 percent over the last five years, according to a new report from Taxpayers for Common Sense. Oil companies reported a pre-tax income of $133.3 billion, and paid just $15.6 billion in federal income taxes. Some of the smaller oil companies paid much less than average, or about 3.7 percent. Oil companies enjoy many tax provisions that aren't available to other taxpayers, and the companies are able to defer taxes year after year, without paying any interest on it. Read more in the press release from Americans United for Change below.
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ZAP's Jonway Auto Targets China's EV Comprehensive Multi-Billion Dollar Stimulus Program Extended to 2020

SANTA ROSA, Calif., July 31, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- ZAP (ZAAP), an Electric Vehicle (EV) automotive company incorporated in California and headquartered in Santa Rosa, California, and its subsidiary Jonway Auto aligns its companies' strategy and priorities to fully utilize the comprehensive multi-billion dollar EV stimulus program announced by the Chinese government on July 14th by China's General Office of the State Council. This announcement commits the central government to implement a comprehensive macro program that is inclusive of EV rebates, sales tax and license fees elimination, electric charging infrastructure installation mandates as well as electric power pricing incentives to stimulate EV market adoption through to the year 2020, thus extending another five years from the 2015 programs announced in prior years. http://www.gov.cn/zhengce/content/2014-07/21/content_8936.htm

Chinese central government has laid out the plan, policies and priorities in this recent announcement for an overall EV stimulus program in China that aims at promoting mass market adoption in the urban cities where fuel consumption and pollution problems are the most prevalent. This creates favorable macro-economic drivers, policies that accelerate EV charging infrastructures and tax incentives and fuel pricing that favors EV, including specific programs that require government vehicle purchasing quotas to allocate a minimum of 30% of its new vehicles to be full electric. Besides the already in place "free" new auto license registration for EVs, which in cities like Shanghai has been more than US$20,000 for new vehicle registrations priced under an auction scheme, there are now other additional stimulus programs offered to buyers of full electric vehicles, whether the buyers are individuals, corporations or leasing companies, starting September 1, 2014. This includes elimination of automobile sales tax for EVs compared to gasoline or hybrids, which is 8.5%, and also the elimination of consumer tax for the manufacturers which ranges from 6% to 10% depending on EV product types and class. Other policies stated by this announcement are requirements for parking garages for building and public areas to install charging stations, with improvement and upgrades from the State Grid to support fast charge. The announcement of deregulation in installation of charging systems where private enterprises can now install charging stations in urban developments or parking garages, and provide charging facilities in public areas will greatly stimulate deployment of charging systems in the cities. This opens up the industry where previously only the State Grid can install charging stations and charge users for the electric power, now private companies can do so. The central government also announced reduction of subsidies for gasoline fuel and tapering this down to zero. There will also be pricing policies for charging electric power at private charging stations and the re-pricing of electricity usage, favorably catering to EVs, in order to drive market adoption.

ZAP and Jonway Auto are revamping Jonway Auto's factory facilities to deliver Electric Vehicle products as its mainstream business and taper off the gasoline car business of Jonway Auto in order to focus the business only on EVs. Already in place are 2 production lines that are producing more than 50 vehicles a day per line as of June 2014, and ramping to 100 per day per line by 3Q2014. The EV SUV and EV minivans from Jonway Auto are well positioned in the EV market and uniquely offers the most cost competitive EV products in SUV and minivan to buyers in China today, given its larger size and range. With the already type approved EV SUV and the soon to be available type approved EV minivan, these EV licensed products could be eligible for up to US$20,000 per vehicle from the central government and local governments' rebates on a per EV basis, depending upon the range between recharges. Today these models are being re-configured for mass production to support optimal eligibility for rebate and performance efficiency. EVs with ranges of over 250Km are eligible for up to US$20,000 in rebate from just the central government, not counting the local government rebates, and EVs with ranges of over 150km in range are eligible for US$10,000 in rebate from the central government, and then would scale up in rebate as the range efficiency improves. ZAP and Jonway's EV minivans in particular will be aiming for getting to a price point that is below the gasoline version in price for its lithium EV product models after the central government's rebate. Therefore, ZAP and Jonway Auto's EV minivan will give city delivery owners savings in not only operational fuel costs but overall cost of ownership either through leasing or purchase. Where there is local government subsidies in the larger cities like Hangzhou, Shenzhen, Guangdong, Shanghai, Tianjin and Beijing, the total rebate could result in little to no cost to the buyer after receiving both central and local government subsidies.

The new models of EV SUV and EV minivan to be unveiled in October 2014, will specifically be engineered and configured to target China's stimulus program, and aims to achieve the ZERO cost ownership threshold for the EV minivan, and "less than gasoline" cost threshold for the EV SUVs; thus, fully leveraging the financial stimulus that is in place in China through 2020.

About ZAP and Jonway Auto

ZAP and Jonway Auto designs and manufactures quality, affordable new energy and electric vehicles (EVs). Jonway Automobile has ISO 9000 manufacturing facilities, engineering, sales and customer services facilities in China, ZAP Jonway has production capacity of up to 50,000 vehicles per year, and has established sales distribution network in China. ZAP, an early pioneer of EVs, brings to both companies a broad range of EV product technologies that is applied to the new product lines. ZAP Jonway is headquartered in Santa Rosa, California and Jonway Auto is located in Zhejiang Province of the People's Republic of China. Additional information about ZAP Jonway is available at http://www.zapworld.com.

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The words "anticipate," "believe," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "plan," and similar expressions that may tend to suggest a future event or outcome are not guarantees of performance, which cannot be predicted or anticipated. These forward-looking statements are based largely on expectations and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the control of the Company. Actual results could differ materially from these forward-looking statements.

New Report: Oil Companies Paid Just 11.7% Tax Rate

Gutting the Renewable Fuel Standard Would Be Yet Another Favor Big Oil Doesn't Need

Washington DC -- A new report from Taxpayers for Common Sense shows that oil companies paid just 11.7 percent of their U.S. income in federal taxes over the last five years, far less than most working Americans paid in that time, and just a fraction of the statutory 35% corporate tax rate.

"This is a perfect example of how the oil industry is allowed to play by a different set of rules than everyone else. They can dodge billions of dollars in taxes, and Washington lets them get away with it. This is the same industry that is now fiercely lobbying the White House for yet another special interest favor: gutting the Renewable Fuel Standard and allowing more foreign oil into the U.S. gasoline supply at the expense of cleaner, cheaper renewable fuels made in America," said Jeremy Funk, Communications Director for Americans United For Change. "Isn't the system rigged enough in Big Oil's favor without Washington helping them become a monopoly at the pump, too?"

The U.S. EPA and the White House are in the final stages of consideration on a proposal that would gut the bipartisan Renewable Fuel Standard by actually reducing the renewable fuel content of gasoline while increasing the foreign oil content. Since gasoline costs more than renewable fuels like ethanol, the EPA proposal would cost Americans more money at the gas pump while killing American jobs. And because the EPA proposal effectively allows oil companies to block access to the marketplace by refusing to install fueling infrastructure for renewable fuels, it will be particularly devastating to America's emerging advanced biofuel industry.

To achieve such a low current tax rate, oil companies were able to take advantage of special tax breaks and loopholes that allowed them to defer more than $17 billion in taxes they would have otherwise owed. One "small" oil company, Apache, earned $6 billion in profits between 2009 and 2013 but deferred its entire tax bill. Not only did the company avoid paying any taxes, but it actually reaped a tax benefit worth $220 million.

The report concludes with a damning indictment of the oil industry's deceitful rhetoric about its tax obligations:

"Oil and gas companies may pay a lot in income taxes, but it is not to the U.S. government. Indeed, the "current" federal income tax rate of some of the largest oil and gas companies – the amount they actually paid during the last five years – was 11.7 percent. The "smaller" companies included in the study which reported positive earnings only paid 3.7 percent. Many of the tax provisions available to the oil industry are not available to other taxpayers, giving these companies a significant tax advantage. The language the industry uses gives the impression that it pays a high federal income tax rate. The American Petroleum Institute cites an industry-wide effective tax rate of 44.3 percent. In reality, the amount oil and gas companies pay in federal income tax is considerably less than the statutory rate of 35 percent, thanks to the convoluted system of tax provisions allowing them to avoid and defer federal income taxes."