Chinese regulators have approved Google's $12.5 billion (£7.9 billion) purchase of US mobile phone manufacturer Motorola Mobility.

This represented the final hurdle for the deal, which has been months in the making.

It had been assumed the deal was imminent in February after the European Commission ratified the merger under the EU Merger Regulation.

As a caveat to the approval, Chinese authorities have told Google it must keep its mobile software Android free for other manufacturers for at least the next five years.

This merger will allow Google to move into the manufacturing of mobile phones and tablets for the first time.

It has already won clearance from US regulators and Google confirmed the Chinese government cleared the deal on Saturday (May 19th).

"Our stand since we agreed to acquire Motorola has not changed and we look forward to closing the deal," the company said about the agreement.

Posted by Simon Thomas

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