BEIJING, April 28 (Xinhua) -- The Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) and armed police forces on Sunday moved to replace the current license plates of military vehicles with new ones, the PLA Daily reported.
The transportation section of the PLA General Logistics Department was quoted as saying that the entire military started hanging new license plates and retrieving the old ones.
The military will adopt new military vehicle plates starting from May 1. Those currently in use, which were introduced in 2004, will be annulled by April 30, the country's Central Military Commission ordered.
According to a statement issued by the transportation section of the PLA General Logistics Department, the move is meant to crack down on the creation, sale and use of counterfeit military vehicle plates and root out loopholes in military vehicle management, so as to maintain social harmony, stability and the reputation of the military.
CURBING LUXURY CARS WEARING MILITARY PLATES
Several types of vehicles will not be eligible for the new plates, including luxury cars, private and local government vehicles, and those for local officials who hold concurrent positions in the PLA and armed police forces.
Luxury vehicles were specified as those with the marks Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Lincoln, Cadillac, Volkswagen Phaeton, Bentley, Jaguar, Porsche, and any car with an emission above 3.0 and priced over 450,000 yuan (72,990 U.S. dollars), as well as SUVs including Land Rover, Porshe Cayenne, and Audi Q7, among others.
In recent years, irregularities in the use of military cars have drawn public attention. Some internet users have posted snapshots on popular Twitter-like microblogs featuring limos with military license plates.
A commentary carried by the PLA Daily said that, in an Internet era, military vehicles, once outside of the confines of barracks, are placed under the limelight of public attention, warning their drivers to mind their behavior.
The transportation section of the PLA General Logistics Department said it will make greater efforts to crack down on luxury cars hung with military license plates, military vehicles entering luxury venues, and misuse of sirens and alarms by such vehicles.
FAKE-PROOF TECHNOLOGIES USED
The statement said the revamp campaign will focus on preventing counterfeiting, unscrupulous issuing, irregular hanging, stealing and loss of license plates.
To prevent counterfeit license plates, the military adopted fake-proof technologies, such as electronic toll collection (ETC), coupling license plates with ETC user cards, so that fake military vehicles will be detected when passing ETC toll gates.
In addition, the registering, production and issuing of military license plates must all be done through a computer database that has been introduced, so luxury cars or vehicles exceeding issuing quotas will be automatically rejected.
The commentary carried by the PLA Daily raised the expectation that the license plate revamp could offer new opportunities for the military to improve work style and display a good image.