The new standard, known as "China 5," sets the sulfur content for gasoline at no more than 10 parts per million, a reduction from the fourth-phase standard of 50 ppm.
The new gasoline will be available nation-wide in 2018.
Ding Jizhu directs an industrial standards department under the Standardization Administration.
"Given that the upgrade of technology and equipment needs time, and also different regions have their own situations, there will be a transitional period to implement the standard till the end of 2017."
Ding estimates the new standard will cut nitrogen oxide emissions by 300-thousand metric tons annually.
The announcement follows severe smog that's affected a wide area of the country since the beginning of the year and complaints from the public about air pollution.
Vehicle emissions have been labeled one of the major causes of air pollution in this country, and the new gasoline standard is seen as a significant step when it comes to fighting the problem.
China is the world's largest auto market.
Data shows one-fifth of particulate matter smaller than 2.5 micrometers in China's air comes from vehicle emissions.
Those smaller particles are a major factor when it comes to air pollution.
But Professor Lin Boqiang, Director of China Center for Energy Economics Research at Xiamen University, says China's heavy reliance on coal is the root cause of the country's air-pollution problem.
"In a short time, the upgrade of petrol should be an effective measure, but it is far from enough. In fact, per-capita car ownership in China is still way below the world's average. Coal provides about 70 percent of China's energy, which is much higher than that of developed countries. So only when we reform our energy structure can we reduce air pollution."
Higher petrol standard will lead to higher price. Lin Boqiang says government, companies and consumers will share the cost together in the beginning.
"I think greener petrol is the cheapest way in dealing with smog. To reform our energy structure, to find a substitute for coal is much more expensive. The petrol upgrade will cost 0.2 or 0.3 yuan per liter, I think in the short time, government, companies and consumers will share the cost together, but in a long run, consumers will have to afford the fee. "
Chinese authorities have placed greater emphasis on environmental protection.
The central authority earlier this month vowed to abandon assessments to local governments based on GDP alone and put more emphasis on public well-being and the environment.
Currently the new standard is piloting in Beijing.
For CRI, this is Li Jing.