According to a report in the Financial Times, Rupert Murdoch, chairman of News Corp, has been given a place on the board of directors of Chinese telephone company China Netcom.

Murdoch would become a non-executive director at China Netcom, and might even be tapped to chair the board's compensation committee. Beijing-based China Netcom in July filed listing application documents for a $1.5 billion initial public offering in Hong Kong and New York. News Corp.'s U.S.-listed shares fell 17 cents to close at $31.25 on Thursday.

Murdoch, who's third wife Wendy Deng is Chinese, has been progressively moving into China for some time now. His Star TV Group anounced in June that it expected to set up a fully-owned subsidiary company in Shanghai within a month, after winning so-called "landing rights" in south China's Guangdong Province in 2001. Earlier, in 1997, ChinaByte, a Chinese-language Web site devoted to technology news, was launched–the first product of a joint venture between China's People's Daily newspaper and News Corporation.


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