Last month, China became the first country in the world to ban video games that have a part of children under the age of 12, which is a move that aims to protect them from excessive video game play.
A new regulation in China’s gaming industry lets government regulators limit the time minors spend gaming. The regulation, which came into effect on September 1, limits minors’ gaming time to no more than three hours per week. The move was introduced in May this year, but has now been enforced in full.
China is moving to implement tough new policies on the gaming industry, aiming to limit time minors can spend playing game consoles and game apps to just three hours a week, the country’s gaming authorities announced on Monday.
The Chinese government is cracking down on gaming for kids, with official media reporting that youngsters would only be permitted to play games for three hours per week on most weeks, with internet gaming only allowed between 8:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. on Fridays, weekends, and public holidays. The new regulations also demand that all online games be connected to a state-run anti-addiction program, that online players use their actual identities, and that regulators have more authority to monitor how gaming companies enforce limits on things like playing time and in-game purchases. Regulators will also engage with parents and schools to prevent a perceived increase in online gaming among China’s children, according to reports.
In addition to the new playtime limits, President Xi Jinping said during a committee meeting that further anti-monopoly measures will be implemented to curb the “disorderly expansion” of big tech and strengthen China’s economy.
Readers may remember that China’s government has been more focused on restricting internet gaming, particularly for minors, which has had negative consequences for Chinese game companies. Tencent started restricting minors’ access to its games in early August, after state media referred to online games as “spiritual opium,” with the same story causing a splash damage impact on Krafton’s IPO offering.
The present Chinese limitations are already having an impact on the stocks of businesses like Netease and Tencent, with the latter’s stock price falling as high as 9.3% in pre-market trading in New York, while Prosus NV, Tencent’s largest shareholder, saw its stock price decrease in Europe.
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