Page last updated at 17:27 GMT, Monday, 21 December 2009

China loses WTO media imports appeal

DVD and music store in Beijing
The WTO wants China to allow greater access for US entertainment firms

China has lost an appeal to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) against a ruling that called for it to stop restricting US film and music imports.

The WTO ruled in August that China's policy of allowing the goods to be imported only by state-run firms broke global trade rules.

The WTO wants Chinese firms to be able to import US DVDs, CDs, computer games, books and magazines and films.

The US and China have been embroiled in a number of trade disputes recently.

"Today America got a big win," said US Trade Representative Ron Kirk.

"We are pleased that the WTO has found against China's import and distribution restrictions."

He said the organisation's decision was "key" to ensuring full market access to China.

"We expect China to respond promptly to these findings and bring its measures into compliance," he added.

Cheap exports

China's current restrictions on US entertainment imports have created a large domestic counterfeit industry, much to US annoyance.

This case is just the latest in a series of trade disputes between China and the US.

In September, the US placed a tariff on car tyre imports from China.

China immediately retaliated by launching a probe into the price of imports of some US car products and chicken meat.

While Washington has long accused China of trade protectionism, the US is also unhappy at the high volume of Chinese exports to America, accusing Beijing of deliberately keeping the yuan undervalued to make its exports artificially cheap.

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