Murdoch Slams China's TV Rules

19 September 2005

Media mogul Rupert Murdoch has launched a fierce attack on China's reluctance to open up its TV markets to overseas firms.

The chairman/ceo of News Corporation says China's authorities are "paranoid" about foreign media and that his own attempts to make headway in the country had "hit a brick wall".

Murdoch was speaking at a New York media conference, where his blunt remarks echoed comments he made in 1993 declaring that telcoms advances presented an "unambiguous threat to totalitarian regimes everywhere".

The Beijing authorities have tightened controls on television ventures this year, after announcing in November 2004 that they would allow foreign investors to take as much as a 49% stake in domestic TV production companies.

The government has subsequently limited such investment to just one venture and has banned "unfriendly" companies, with the aim of defending "national cultural security".

China offered no immediate reaction to Murdoch's comments, but Beijing is unlikely to welcome such undiplomatic views.

Data sourced from Financial Times online; additional content by WARC staff