China slows down approval for new online games - SCMP

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Sept 9 (Reuters) - China has temporarily slowed down approval for all new online games in a bid to curb a gaming addiction among young people, the South China Morning Post reported on Thursday citing people with knowledge of the matter.

The SCMP said the strategy to slow down approvals emerged after a Wednesday meeting between Chinese authorities and gaming firms including Tencent Holdings Ltd (0700.HK) and NetEase Inc (9999.HK).

Beijing on Wednesday had summoned gaming firms including Tencent and NetEase. read more

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A man plays online game on a computer at an internet cafe in Beijing, China August 31, 2021. REUTERS/Florence Lo

Tencent declined to comment. NetEase did not immediately respond to Reuters request for comment.

China moved in August to ban under-18s from playing video games for more than three hours a week, saying this was needed to curb a growing addiction to what it once described as "spiritual opium". read more

China has conducted a broad crackdown on a wide range of sectors including tech, education and property to strengthen government control after years of runaway growth. read more

(This story was corrected to say China "slows down" approvals, not "suspended", in headline and paragraph 1 and 2 after SCMP clarifies. Also, corrects paragraph 2 to say China's strategy emerged after a meeting and not at the meeting)

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Reporting by Anirudh Saligrama in Bengaluru Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky and John Stonestreet

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