China lifts bans on Xbox and PS4

Summary:The doors have been reopened after 14 years, with Microsoft already on the move.

The Chinese government announced on Monday that it has lifted a decade-long boycott against game consoles, such as the Xbox and PlayStation, in the country's newest free trade zone.

According to a recent government decree published by the State Council of China, foreign-invested companies are allowed, for the first time in almost 14 years, to carry out gaming machines' production and marketing activities in the Shanghai Free Trade Zone. However, the content of games is still subject to censorship, according to a mydrivers.com report published on January 6.

In 2000, China not only shut doors to foreign video games, game consoles, and accessories, it also prohibited existing video game centers from expanding or purchasing any new machines.

Although detailed regulations on how the country's obsolete game and game console market would look like are not clear at the moment, Monday's announcement is still an encouraging sign.

According to the mydrivers.com report, Microsoft has already worked with BesTV, a Chinese multimedia services provider, to introduce the Xbox into a huge but yet-to-develop market. China's cultural authority was also reported by Sina Games last month as saying that it could allow the Xbox One and PS4 into China as early as mid-2014.

Topics: China, Microsoft

About

Liu Jiayi is a Hong Kong-based writer and editor.He produces video stories for Al Jazeera English and Severn News Australia, and also worked as the video editor for the Hong Kong-San Francisco Ocean Film Festival 2012. He is studying under a Master of Journalism Programme at the University of Hong Kong.

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