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China Daily Website

Charges to download music in effect from July

Updated: 2013-03-21 17:07

Downloading online music will cease to be free in China from July, a famous music composer said.

Gao Xiaosong, a famous music composer, said Internet users will have to start paying to download music from July 1, according to a report on, a website under the State Council Information Office.

He said many record companies, large Internet enterprises and related government administrations are “finalizing work” for the move.

At the end of 2012, several big music websites, such as Tencent, revealed they would make high-quality music available for download from 2013, which was supported by the government, the report said.

After the music was put on the Internet, composers received money mainly from copyright fees paid by websites and telecommunication expenses paid by mobile phone users, according to the report.

However, there has been no charging mechanism to cover and manage online music in China for a long time, said the report.

Gui Xinsheng, an economic professor with Beijing Institute of Technology, was quoted saying that collecting fees for downloading music to protect composers’ copyright and promote the industries development is a trend.

Cui said the fee will not be high because the success of online music depends on large numbers of downloads.