The China Gaming Industry Committee released a report the day before saying that 70% of underage people spend less than three hours a week gaming. Based on this information, the department concludes that “Underage gambling has been largely eliminated“, reported financial times.
In August last year, Beijing shocked the gaming industry by allowing minors to play online games for just three hours a week — one hour each on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The decision followed an information campaign in the state media, which described online gaming as a type of game “spiritual opium”. However, local businesses supported Beijing’s decision, and at Chinese giant Tencent’s games, time spent online by minors fell 92% in the third quarter compared to the same period last year.
Experts make it clear that Chinese teenagers naturally have the opportunity to circumvent restrictions: according to reports, 35% of parents allow children to register accounts with their documents. However, the news that the problem of child gambling has been “solved” could indicate Beijing’s policy towards the industry is being relaxed. And the local media have already changed their rhetoric: the Chinese Communist Party’s official publication “People’s Daily” has already stated that the gambling industry is contributing to this “Development of Advanced Technologies”.
At the time of Beijing policy tightening, Chinese gaming giants have focused their efforts on foreign markets as well as technologies related to the metaverse: virtual reality glasses and cloud services.