China fires shot across Google’s bow

A Chinese minister has told a technology conference in the country that Google will "pay the consequences" if it does not obey the law.

Li Yizhong, the minister of industry and information technology told China’s annual legislation session that “…what needs to be shut down will be shut down, and “what needs to be blocked will be blocked”.

According to a report by the BBC, Li said the internet would thrive in China, with or without Google, and deciding leave the country is up to them.

Back in January, Google threatened to withdraw from China following attacks on Gmail accounts belonging to human rights activists. Google said it was no longer prepared to filter content through Goole.cn in order to comply with Chinese law.

But Yizhong said: “We need to preserve our nation’s interest, our people’s interest. We cannot be relaxed with any information that will cause harm to the stability of our society, to our system, and to the health of our under-age young people.”

Yesterday, Eric Schmidt, Google’s CEO, said “something will happen soon” in relation to the company’s talks with the Chinese government, but would not elaborate.

Richard Morris

Richard joined Lakestar McCann as news editor in 2009 and over the past three years has run the company's daily news feed service. Prior to joining the team at Lakestar he worked as a business reporter at Crain's Manchester Business, and spent three years as a general reporter at the North West Evening Mail in Cumbria.

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