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Over a year later, South Korean devs still aren't allowed to publish games in China

Over a year later, South Korean devs still aren't allowed to publish games in China

August 10, 2018 | By Emma Kidwell

The Chinese government instituted a full ban on the release of new South Korea-developed video games last year, and it seems as though South Korean game developers and publishers are still not able to obtain new licenses which would allow them to publish games in the country. 

Put into place on March 2017, the ban halts the licensing of yet-unreleased games of a South Korean origin and essentially cuts the country off from one of the largest mobile game markets in the world, making it impossible for South Korean devs to succeed in the market. 

The newly formed Chinese regulatory body, the State Administration of Radio and Television, has not granted any new licenses since March 28th for any mobile game by a South Korean dev or publisher. 

The ban was initially speculated as a response to a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THADD) missile defense system built in South Korea to protect against potential attacks from North Korea. China, however, saw the missile system, built in partnership with the United States, as a direct security threat. 

Pocket Gamer reports that no reason has been given for the suspension, but it comes during a crackdown on rule breakers on Chinese app stores for those suspected to be hosting inappropriate content.

However, Chinese developers have been able to publish their games in South Korea, leading some local devs to see situation as giving Chinese companies an unfair advantage over their South Korean counterparts.

Apparently an official from the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of South Korea explained they had tried to get in contact with the relevant Chinese regulatory bodies, but the government “is not responding”.

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