Reuters takes minority stake in Chinese financial news provider

Reuters takes minority stake in Chinese financial news provider

News and information group Reuters has acquired an undisclosed minority stake in online financial information provider, ChinaWeb.

ChinaWeb's principal operating business, Hexun, is one of the largest independent online financial Web sites in China, with nearly 50 million unique users per month, generating approximately 670 million page views per month.

Financial terms of the cash transaction were not disclosed.

Earlier this year the European Union and US filed complaints with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) over restrictions imposed on by the Chinese government on foreign financial news providers working in the country.

Under the existing regulations, non-domestic vendors are required to operate through an agent that is a branch of Xinhua, the state news agency. Moreover, Xinhua has recently launched a financial information service in direct competition with overseas suppliers.

The EU argued that the measures appear to breach China's commitments on national treatment and market access, which require that foreign companies can operate in China and are not treated less favourably than local firms.

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