This is an important breakthrough for Google. The company only draws about a third or less of the Internet search engine traffic in China, significantly less than its local rival Baidu, but the loss of its license would have locked it out of world's single largest market of online users -- not to mention mobile users. The potential for income in that country is huge, so investors are obviously happy -- shares climbed 3.1% to $470.69 in premarket trading in New York.
Google is happy too, and so is China. Whether this represents a loss for freedom of speech advocates is another question. Chinese officials still may block access to the Hong Kong website, but for now that hasn't been the case.