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New Regulations on Foreigners Mapping in China

China’s Ministry of Land and Resources released new regulations applying to foreigners who conduct cartographic activities in the country. Foreign cartographic work can only take two forms: a joint venture with a domestic company or a one-time job such as cartography preparing for state-approved events. Foreigners are forbidden from performing activities such as geodetic surveys, aerophotographical surveys, administrative district boundary surveys, hydrographic surveys, topographic mapping, world and national administrative mapping, provincial-and-below level administrative mapping, national school mapping, 3-D mapping, and electronic navigational maps. 

For Internet mapping activities, the regulation has even stricter requirements. A joint venture is a must and the foreign share must be less than half. The report mentioned that, in recent years, a great deal of national security related information has been leaked via Internet mapping.

Source: People’s Daily, June 10, 2011