Google-China off the menu as Dragon breathes fire
Google's opposition to censorship in China was the one topic left off the table in Davos -- at China's request.
"China didn't want to discuss Google," Josef Ackermann, CEO of Deutsche Bank, said. China's vice-premier Li Keqiang made that clear, he said. "Google has backed off a little bit."
Even Google CEO Eric Schmidt didn't bring up China, a country that will account for $600m (€433m) of Google's sales this year, according to JPMorgan Chase. Google said this month that it was the target of a "highly sophisticated" attack on its system, and that human-rights activists were targeted.
At Davos, participants such as financier George Soros, economist Joseph Stiglitz and French President Nicolas Sarkozy debated technology topics such as social networking and 3-D features used in the motion picture 'Avatar'. The discussion didn't include the conflict between China and Google, even in panels such as 'The Rise of Asia' or 'Redesigning the Global Dimensions of China's Growth'.
By leaving China, Google, the most used internet search engine, would be giving up access to the world's largest Internet market. (Bloomberg)