SHANGHAI Jan 14 Chinese leader Xi Jinping has
ordered the military to choose domestic brands when procuring
vehicles, part of a broad effort to reduce costs and buy
locally-produced goods, state media reported.
The decision, contained in a circular issued late on Monday,
follows a ban in April on the use of military licence plates on
luxury cars, most of which were foreign brands.
Xi, who became Communist Party chief in November 2012 and
also serves as president and top military leader as head of the
Central Military Commission, has launched a government-wide
drive to encourage frugality and fight corruption.
Government officials have already been urged to drive
home-produced brands, such as Red Flag, challenging Audi, the
Volkswagen-owned brand that has dominated the
government market for 20 years. The Foreign Ministry has said
that minister Wang Yi is now chauffered in a Red Flag H7.
The circular, approved by Xi and issued by the People's
Liberation Army's staff headquarters as well as the political,
logistics and armament departments, said funds used by the army
should be strictly regulated and the budgeting processes
improved, the state-run Xinhua news agency said.
The purchase of new military cars should be arranged through
a centralised system, it said. The document was "aimed at
promoting frugality and cutting down on waste in military and
armed police forces".
In line with similar calls to directed at government
officials, it urged strengthened supervision over spending and
banned "personal banquets financed with public funds".
The circular also banned giving or accepting money,
securities, souvenirs and local products and called for strict
controls on celebrations, forums, exhibitions and performances.
(Reporting by John Ruwitch; Editing by Ron Popeski)