Text of Chinese official comments on Google

BEIJING, March 23 (Reuters) - China on Tuesday condemned Google's GOOG.O decision to end self-censorship of its Chinese-language search site and to redirect users to Google's Hong Kong search site not self-censored by the company. [ID:nN22214210]

Here are the main parts of comments from China’s State Council Information Office (SCIO), issued by the official Xinhua news agency and other official media in Chinese.

An unnamed official from the SCIO said:

“Foreign companies operating in China must abide by Chinese laws. Google has violated the written promise it made on entering the Chinese market. It is totally wrong in halting (censorship) filtering of its search provider and also making aspersions and accusations towards China about hacking attacks. We firmly oppose politicising commercial issues, and express our dissatisfaction and anger at Google Inc’s unreasonable accusations and practices.”

The official noted that Google announced its complaints over China’s censorship and hacking attacks from within the country on Jan 12.

The official said: “After repeated requests from Google, and to hear its real views face-to-face and demonstrate China’s sincerity, on January 29 and February 25 of this year responsible officials from China’s relevant authorities held talks with Google, and offered patient and detailed explanations about the issues raised.”

The official said: “They stressed that foreign companies in China should abide by Chinese laws, and if Google is willing to abide by Chinese laws, we continue to welcome it operating and developing in China. If Google insists on dismantling the search service of its Chinese website, that is Google’s own affair. But it must follow Chinese law and international custom, and responsibly handle the aftermath.”

The official said: “The Chinese government encourages the development and spread of the Internet, and promotes the opening of the Internet to the outside (world). Discussion and expression on China’s Internet are very lively, and digital commerce is developing rapidly. The facts demonstrate that China has a healthy environment for investing in and developing the Internet. China will unwaveringly adhere to a guiding policy of opening up, and it welcomes participation by foreign businesses in developing the Chinese Internet.” (Reporting by Chris Buckley)