Since about 2009 there has been a major problem in China with people using fake number plates on their cars. These illegal plates are made in workshops around the country and look almost exactly like the real thing.
There are many reasons why the Chinese like these illegal plates:
Taxi drivers use them as they are either unable to get licenses for their vehicles due to the near state monopoly on taxis, their vehicles are unroadworthy and they could not get a license or they are just crooks out to spend as little as possible to make money using fake meters and fake license plates.
Some people like to use military plates as the police are not allowed to stop them and they will never have to pay traffic fines.
People with stolen and smuggled cars have no way of getting legal registrations.
With fake license plates drivers will never have to pay speeding fines or parking fines.
More recently, the price of registrations has become very, very high in the cities and may cost more than the car itself.
The problem is very widespread and tens of thousands of illegal registrations (and the vehicles they are on) are seized and destroyed every year in China. Do a web search for ‘counterfeit Chinese license plates’ or similar and you will be amazed.
It seems that one Ebay seller has found these illegal plate shops and is now selling mint Chinese plates in fairly large quantities. The only mint genuine Chinese plates that exist for collectors have come from the back doors of the registration authorities in China and are very rare.
These copies are almost exactly like the genuine, official plates but would get you arrested in China.
These are some of the many that plateegel from New Zealand has been selling but he claims they are used – they all appear to be mint unused plates however. The registrations are from the very beginning of the current series and all plates used to have an official seal in them – none of these has the seal however. There is also a problem that the back street shop that made them was not very inventive and too many of them have very similar combinations of digits.
Close but not quite right.
If you are happy to buy illegal license plates then go ahead. These are close to the real thing but not exactly correct.