NEW YORK (AP) — Google says authorities in China have approved its acquisition of Motorola Mobility. This brings the Internet search giant closer to completing its biggest deal ever.
Google Inc. is buying the mobile phone maker for $12.5 billion. The deal was announced last August and had received all necessary regulatory approvals except in China. Google's relations with China have been strained since it moved its search engine out of the country two years ago in a dispute over censorship and security.
Google spokeswoman Niki Fenwick says the Chinese government cleared the deal on Saturday.
The deal allows Google to expand into manufacturing phones, tablet computers and other consumer devices for the first time. Google also gets access to more than 17,000 Motorola patents.
The deal is expected to close early next week.