China grants licenses for 67 online games in July

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HONG KONG, July 12 (Reuters)China’s gaming regulator on Tuesday granted publishing licenses for 67 online games, including titles owned by developers Youzu Interactive 002174.SZ and iDreamSky 1119.HK.

Industry giants Tencent 0700.HK and NetEase 9999.HK, NTES.O did not receive licenses in the July batch, nor in the previous two batches in April and June.

The release of the July list comes as a relief to companies in the world’s biggest gambling industry, which have been battered by new regulations and a long suspension of gambling approvals.

The National Press and Public Administration (NPPA) ended a nearly nine-month freeze on granting new licenses in April, but did not release a new list in May. Last month, it granted publishing licenses to 60 games.

Unlike many other countries, China limits the number of video games available by allocating a limited number of game licenses. Previously, it published regular monthly lists of endorsements.

(Reporting by Josh Ye and Meg Shen; Editing by Louise Heavens and Jan Harvey)

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Carolyn M. Daniel