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‘China will not bar Google and Microsoft services’

Beijing, China: China’s industry regulator will not shut down online mapping services provided by Google Inc and Microsoft Corp, according to the State Bureau of Surveying and Mapping (SBSM), China. This is the first time, the regulator has firmly denied that it intended to close the companies’ online mapping services – has banished concerns that Google may have to cancel its service in China, which has been losing market share.
“We will not investigate or shut down the websites that have submitted their applications and are under examination,” the SBSM said in an e-mailed reply to queries from China Daily. It added that it has received applications to provide services from the Chinese divisions of Google and Microsoft.Companies have to obtain a license from the bureau to provide online mapping services in China. The bureau said earlier that it began closing down unqualified websites, and those that have failed to apply for a license, from July 1.
Previous regulations stipulated that in order to provide online mapping services, a foreign company had to form a joint venture with a Chinese counterpart, with the domestic company owning a controlling stake. However, this requirement was changed in June, when it was decided that the Chinese enterprise did not have to control the company.
Source: China Daily