Google pledges to obey Chinese law

Search engine will stop diverting users automatically to Hong Kong site.

Google has promised to "obey Chinese law" and stop automatically diverting mainland users to its unfiltered Hong Kong site, said Zhang Feng, an official of China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, at a news conference on Tuesday.

Visitors to the site are now invited to click through to the Hong Kong page instead of being sent straight there.

"The rectification and reform in the annual application conforms to regulation", he added.

Google has said that under its new licence, its Chinese service will continue to offer music-downloads, a translation service and e-commerce.

In a blog post on its website, the search company said it will end a partnership with local website Tianya to operate a social networking forum, and will start its own service.