Beijing renewing Google's business license

08:06, July 12, 2010      

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The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology confirmed Sunday that it had renewed the operating license of Internet search giant Google Inc, a breakthrough of once-sourced relationship between the two.

A ministry spokesman, speaking anonymously, said that the result of the yearly checkup on Google was "approved after rectification", which means that Google basically meets the Chinese regulator's administrative requirements.

Meanwhile, the search giant promised it will not provide "lawbreaking content", including pornography and other legally-disallowed content to Chinese Internet users.

The California-based giant said Friday it had received approval to operate in the world's most populous country. Search requests at Google.cn from within China's mainland now requires an extra click that then takes the user to its Hong Kong site.

The Internet search giant wants to remain in China because its online advertising market is expected to grow as high as $15 billion to $20 billion annually in just a few years, analysts said.

For its part, China seems to realize losing an industry giant like Google would set back its innovation efforts, they said.

An official with Ministry of Industry and Information Technology confirmed the license was renewed for another year for Beijing Guxiang Information Technology Co. Ltd., the operator of Google's China website, the official Xinhua News Agency said Sunday.

The website of the ministry, which regulates the Internet in China, listed Guxiang on Sunday among some 200 companies whose licenses had been renewed until 2012.

China's decision to allow Google to continue operations has resolved a lengthy dispute that had threatened the company's future in the country.

Xinhua said Sunday that Guxiang agreed to "abide by Chinese law" and "ensure the company provides no lawbreaking content" in its renewal application letter.

"After our assessment, we decided that Guxiang had basically met the requirements," the ministry official was quoted as saying.

Guxiang also agreed that all content it provides is subject to the supervision of government regulators, the official said.

China is not yet a big moneymaker for Google, accounting for only an estimated $270 million to $600 million of the company's projected $28 billion in revenue this year. But the number of Internet users in China is estimated at 384 million, well more than the nearly 200 million in the United States.

By People's Daily Online

(Editor:张心意)

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