Google's application to renew its Chinese Internet Content Provider (ICP) licence is still being reviewed by the Beijing government, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology in China has announced.
Speaking for the first time about the current status of world’s largest search engine in China, Wan Lijian, spokesman for the ministry stated: "As Google submitted the application in late June, it is impossible to finish the examination in such a short time."
Google had submitted the application for the renewal of its ICP license renewal last week.
Speaking to The China Daily, Google spokesperson Marsha Wang said that the company was still waiting to hear from the government, but that Google's existing ICP licence continues to be valid until the Chinese government officially refuses to renew it.
Since its dispute with the Chinese government over censorship issue, Google has seen its market share in the country fall. Over the last three months, Google's share of the Chinese search market has dropped from 35.6 per cent to 30.9 per cent.