In today’s increasingly globalized world, it’s often we have westernized businesses requiring their website to be accessible and fast in China. After all, China is no different – their web users are just as impatient as those in the rest of the world.
So what do you do? Selling locally on the internet is difficult, but selling to China can be an especially daunting task, with specific licensing required. Luckily you have CDN.net to help.
First, we’ve established private CDN PoPs located inside of China, available to pre-approved clients. Why are these private? China requires websites hosted locally in China to have an ICP license. This is an internet content provider license. Now I won’t downplay this; it can be extraordinarily difficult for a western company to be granted an ICP license. From 2006-2010, Google did not have an ICP license, instead borrowing a local company’s license.
So here’s the question – do you really need an ICP license?
No, you don’t NEED an ICP license. Using our CDN PoPs in surrounding countries will provide reasonable access times. Now, due to a few reasons, such as latency or the great firewall of China, your website won’t be as fast as it would if it were hosted locally. Something to note, even if you do have an ICP license, doesn’t mean your site will be whitelisted by the great firewall of China. It’s really just a license to host your site locally in China. Honestly, if you’re unsure if you need a license, it’s probably best to start with simply using our standard CDN network.
Okay, I want to host locally in China. How do I get an ICP license?
This is where things can get a bit tricky. There are some requirements that must be met in order to apply for an ICP license.
- Chinese owned businesses with a Chinese business license can apply for a business ICP license.
- Partially or wholly foreign-owned businesses with a Chinese business license can apply for a business ICP license.
- Chinese nationals can apply for an individual ICP license using their state-issued ID.
- Foreign nationals can apply for a individual ICP license using their passport as ID, however must be present in China to do so
Now there’s also an eCommerce ICP license, for businesses who primarily operate online. You’ll need to meet these requirements to receive an eCommerce ICP license.
- Chinese-owned businesses with a Chinese business license.
- Companies where less than 50% of the company is owned by a non-Chinese can legally apply. Note, it’s been said companies with foreign investment have had an extremely difficult time receiving a eCommerce ICP license.
Say you do meet those requirements, what’s next?
We didn’t say this was easy. There’s a few more requirements to apply.
- You’ll need a Chinese landline or cell phone number.
- An Alipay.com account, hooked up with an international Visa/Mastercard or other source of funds.
- A Chinese address to receive a package, and if necessary, forward to you.
- Someone who can read Chinese, to help you fill out the forms.
Still with me?
If you’re able to get that, then we’re really all set. At this point, you just need to submit the forms to us. We’ll submit them to our local infrastructure provider, who will send them to the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, who issues the ICP licenses. If the application is approved, we’ll open up the local Chinese PoPs for you.