In a surprising turn of events Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) relationship with China has deteriorated, as the tech giant is now prohibited from selling iBooks and iTunes movies in the country, only seven months after Apple launched the service in China.
Apple's online movie and book stores were blocked on orders from the broadcasting regulator, the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television. The orders are based on new laws the Chinese government introduced earlier this year, and according to the new laws foreign-owned companies are not allowed to publish content online in China.
This new diplomatic complication is a major concern. Apple recorded revenues of $18.4 billion from China for the fourth quarter of 2015 period alone. A significant portion of that comes from App Store downloads.
Apple is still doing better in China than other tech giants like Facebook, which is blocked completely, and Google, which is blocked mostly. Apple’s CEO did manage to sign an important agreement with China mobile back in 2013 allowing Apple to sell iPhones in the country, which has been very successful since then.