Legal Primer: Regulation Of China’s Digital Game Industry

December 5, 2022

This is the sixth edition of our legal primer on the regulation of China’s digital game industry. This edition, like its predecessors, provides an overview of the relevant laws and regulations, as well as actual industry practice in the People’s Republic of China (the “PRC” or “China”). In doing so we draw upon not only the written rules, but also informal comments from regulators and other industry participants, in addition to the many years of experience that our attorneys have advising clients in China’s digital game industry.

This bulletin first provides an overview of the key factors that shape the scope of China’s digital game market, including the high levels of software piracy and prior prohibition on game consoles such as Xbox and PlayStation. As a result of these factors, China’s game market is essentially an online game market, and this primer therefore focuses upon the regulation of online games. This preliminary section also explains China’s policy of prohibiting foreign (meaning non-PRC) companies from operating online games in China.

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