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Japanese incentives boost sales of green cars, TVs

Posted Monday, Jun 15, 2009, 2:18 pm in Employee News

Japanese are snatching up hybrid cars, solar panels and energy-efficient TVs, wooed by government incentives designed to battle a recession while conserving energy, the Associated Press reported.

Tax breaks and rebates on green cars have helped two hybrid vehicles, Toyota’s Prius and Honda Motor Co.’s Insight, become the best-selling models in Japan in the last two months, the AP said. Likewise, consumers are buying up ecological electronics products to earn “eco-points” that the government has promised can be later converted into products or other deals that have yet to be announced, the news service said.

The renewed consumption is giving Japan’s struggling corporations and sagging economy a much-needed jolt—although some economists wonder if the demand created by the incentives will run out of steam, the AP reported. Under a new government program, hybrids are now tax-free, delivering savings of about 150,000 yen ($1,500) for a Prius buyer. Other fuel-efficient models qualify for lower savings, the news service said. (Associated Press/The Detroit News)
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