While the rest of the world has been binging themselves stupid on Netflix’s ever-increasing catalogue of addictive shows, China has had to go without.
The streaming service launched in an additional 130 countries earlier this year, but The People’s Republic was missing from the list, with the company saying it still intended to expand into the country at some point.
Netflix is currently unavailable in Crimea, North Korea and Syria due to US government restrictions, and while China remained a possibility when it came to Flix expansion, it seems the regulatory environment in the country has now proven too much.
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The company on Monday told shareholders it’s scrapping its ambitions for expansion into China, and will instead be selling its original shows, such as Narcos, to Chinese media outlets.
An earnings report from the company read: “The regulatory environment for foreign digital content services in China has become challenging.
“We now plan to license content to existing online service providers in China rather than operate our own service in China in the near term.”
China’s having none of this dangerous activity
Online and media content is heavily censored in China, with websites such as Facebook and Google being blocked, and content services offered by both Apple and Disney being shut down earlier this year.
New rules also require government approval for foreign companies to provide online content, making the process of expansion even more difficult for companies such as Netflix.
The firm had previously stated its goal of providing content in every country in the world, with CEO Reed Hastings previously citing Disney and Apple as examples of successful Chinese expansion.
For now, though, it seems Netflix will be joining the expanding list of companies blocked from providing content in The People’s Republic.
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