According to a report from the South China Morning post, China is planning on ending its ban on video game consoles in the country. The production and sale of consoles were banned more than a decade ago in 2000 because authorities believed that video games were potentially unhealthy for the Chinese youth, especially games that contained large amounts of violence.
Lifting the ban thirteen years later is part of the country’s plan to expand and open up its economy internationally. It is expected that companies like Sony, Microsoft or Nintendo will be able to sell their consoles in the country, but only if they produce the products in Shanghai’s new free trade zone. The government would also need to screen and approve their content.
It may sound like a lot of hurdles to overcome, but for a country that has had to rely on the grey market (where prices can be excessive at times) to get their gaming fix, this is good news. It also remains to be seen if console manufacturers will be willing to create new production lines in Shanghai, which should be more costly than their current operations in other parts of China.