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Google CEO: we're committed to remaining in China
Published on: 2010-01-22
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SAN FRANCISCO (Dow Jones)--Google Inc. (GOOG) Chief Executive Eric Schmidt said his company remains "quite committed" to remaining in China, but will in a "reasonably short time" make changes to its now-censored search results.

"We wish to remain in China. We like the Chinese people and our Chinese employees. We like the business opportunities there and we'd like to do that on somewhat different terms than we have, but we remain quite committed to being there," he said on Thursday.

Schmidt said the company was "in conversation" with government authorities and that Google's business in China today remains unchanged.

"We continue to follow their laws, we continue to offer censored results, but at a reasonably short time from now we will be making some changes there," he said during a conference call with analysts after the Mountain View, Calif.-based company reported better-than-expected fourth-quarter results.

Google shocked Silicon Valley and China last week by threatening to pull out of China after the Internet giant said it was one of as many as 34 companies that were hit with major cyberattacks believed to have originated from the country.

Google also revealed that Chinese human rights activists were being monitored and said as a result that Google would no longer be willing to censor search results in China.

Concerns about the fallout of Google's announcement increased this week after the company said it will delay the Chinese launch of two mobile phone models that use its Android operating system, the clearest sign yet that its standoff with Beijing could impact key initiatives beyond its core search engine business.

Schmidt held up Google's fourth-quarter results as evidence the company performed well across the board in what he called a "rollercoaster year, by any means."

He said display advertising was now a "huge" opportunity for Google, while its enterprise business was showing "terrific momentum" and the company's Android mobile operating platform strategy has been a "pretty clear success at this point."

Schmidt said he was optimistic about the future as more people and advertisers continue to move online. He added that the company continued to invest heavily in people and technology that will increase Google's innovation.

Shares in Google were trading after-hours down 4.3% at $557.70, after closing the regular session up 0.4% at $582.98.

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