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Ministry of Culture Closed Down 130,000 Black Internet CafÚs in Past Six Years

According to its 2010 Annual Report on China’s Internet Café Market, the Chinese Ministry of Culture closed down 130,000 Internet cafés in the past six years, “maximally squeezing their living space, effectively regulating the market order (for their services), and clearing obstacles to the healthy development of Internet cafes.” “In 2010 alone, the government received more than 20,000 charges against Internet cafes, initiated investigation of more than 30,000 cases, transferred 833 cases to judicial authorities, and closed 28,000 cases. The Ministry also issued 36,000 correctional orders, 69,000 warnings, 6,999 orders to close down the business, and suspended 83 licenses. It levied fines of 88.39 million yuan (US$13.47 million) and confiscated 0.39 million yuan (US$60,000) of illegal income.” The industry’s 2010 revenue was 7.71 million yuan (US$1.17 million), 12.96 percent down from the level in 2009.  

The report stated that its 2011 goal is to maintain the current market size while advancing franchise operations, stepping up law enforcement by increasing the penalties, and building Internet café associations. 

Source: Xinhua, March 17, 2011