China Agrees to Further Open Entertainment Market to U.S.

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Jul. 16 – The Chinese government agreed this week to further open its lucrative entertainment market to the United States before March 16, 2011.

The move is the result of a World Trade Organization arbitration ruling that stipulated that the Chinese government allow American and other international companies to export film, music, online games and books and permit Sino-U.S. joint ventures to distribute music through the Internet. The United States had challenged China’s import barriers to entertainment goods.

According to the WTO ruling, China will be allowed to keep the import rights of two state-run film companies to ensure the government’s examination rights towards imported films to some extent so that it doesn’t have to increase the quota of importing 20 foreign films every year.

In a letter from the Chinese and U.S. ambassadors to the WTO posted on the organization’s web site, the two countries agreed that China should implement the WTO’s ruling within 14 months of its adoption by the global trade body on January 19 this year.