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article imageShanghai may allow foreign publications into World Expo

By Wang Fangqing     Jan 21, 2010 in World
An authority of Shanghai World Expo said yesterday that foreign publications may get permission to be sold in the city during the six-month event.
The 2010 World Expo is being held in Shanghai starting in May and is expected to draw as many as 80 million people. The theme of the international fair and exposition will be "Better City – Better Life," marking Shanghai's 21st century status as a major global economic and cultural player. The World Expo features a number of events.
While there is no final decision as of yet regarding foreign publications, the government is considering it. A proposal will be sent to Beijing for further discussion at a "proper time," said Zhu Yonglei, deputy chief of the Bureau of Shanghai World Expo Coordination.
According to China Daily, Yonglei said the proposal will follow the policy Beijing applied during the Olympic Games last year when foreign newspapers and magazines could be found on newsstands in limited locations in Beijing. The move was applauded by the International community as a gesture toward media freedom.
Since the Shanghai World Expo lasts for much longer than the Olympics, expert says it could be a rare opportunity for foreign publishers.
"It could be a breakthrough for the international media in China," said Guo Ke, a professor in communications at Shanghai International Studies University.
This event marks the first time the World Expo has been hosted in a developing country, and the there had never been bans on foreign publications at prior Expos.
China's strict censorship and local protectionism have long been a bummer for International media companies doing businesses in China.
Aside from the recent Google case, Star Movies, a subsidiary of Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation and the largest media company in Asia, left China in 2008 after struggling in the market for three years.
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