BEIJING — The State press is reporting the Chinese government's optimistic forecasts of a 300%-plus jump in automotive sales next year. Demand in the light-vehicle market for 1999 stands at 450,000 units, a number the State says will rise to some 1.7 million in 2000. The reason for the dramatic increase: a forecasted leap in the number of cars purchased by private buyers, which the State says is likely to hold an equal market share with that of institutional buyers. Not everyone agrees. ...

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