Chinese experts blast Google for "politicizing" trade rules

15:49, June 18, 2010      

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Chinese trade and Internet experts have criticized Google's move to declare China's Internet restrictions a trade barrier, saying it was another move by Google to politicize itself.

Despite ending censorship of its Chinese-language search engine,, and redirecting Chinese mainland users to a site in Hong Kong, Google was launching a new move to challenge China's Internet regulation, experts said.

Professor Zheng Yongnian, director of the East Asia Institute of the National University of Singapore, said Google's attempt to link Internet regulation with trade barriers was, on the surface, an economic issue, but in essence, it challenged China's domestic affairs.

Google was "politicizing" itself again after blaming China for alleged hacker attack in January, said Zheng.

A top Google executive said earlier this month that Google was working with U.S. and European officials to build a case to take to the World Trade Organization that would argue "Internet censorship" acted as a trade barrier, believing it could help U.S. tech companies seeking greater access to Chinese consumers.

Robert Boorstin, Google's director of corporate and policy communications, said Google wanted to demonstrate that "censorship" resulted in fewer search pages, which limited the capacity of the country to enjoy fair trade and the ability to operate on a level playing field with competitors such as China's Baidu.

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