At a technology conference in Bejing Google representatives restated that the company has a long-term commitment to the Chinese market and would continue to operate there. According to an AFPs report, Google vice president John Liu said China was a “very important market for Google.”
Google has displayed tremendous ambivalence about China over the past year, taking a principled stand on government-sponsored hacking into GMail and later backtracking to some degree in an effort to maintain a presence in the market.
China has the world’s largest internet and mobile markets, with almost 340 million internet users, more than the entire US population, and almost 750 million mobile subscribers. After taking a strong anti-censorship stand Google is trying to find a way to remain in China but not appear to have fundamentally compromised it’s new anti-censorship position.
In a related item Google has reportedly terminated contracts with seven Chinese ad resellers. According to Reuters:
Google . . . said in late September it would terminate the contracts with the seven ad resellers in China, without giving a reason . . .
Credit Suisse estimated in a note on Monday that the seven AdWords distributors contributed 1.5 billion yuan ($226 million) in gross revenue last year or about 40 percent of Google China’s revenue.
Google’s termination of the contracts with the resellers has caused uncertainty in the market and led to slower customer acquisitions by the search giant in China, analysts said.
Related Google-China coverage:
- China Renews Google License To Operate In China
- Google No Longer Redirecting Google China To Google Hong Kong
- Impact Of Leaving China? Google Loses Paid Search Share
- So Now Google Thinks Everyone Should Care About Chinese Censorship?
- Google Stops Censoring In China, Hopes Using New Domain Meets Legal Requirements
- Google Just Says No To China: Ending Censorship, Due To Gmail Attack