The website, which went live late last week, is being viewed as a good-faith gesture from China, meant to show that it is serious about cracking down on rampant box office fraud in the country and that it will honor a new agreement signed in secret with the Motion Picture Association of America.

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During Chinese president Xi Jinping‘s high-profile visit to the United States late last month, the MPAA sealed a new film distribution agreement with China’s powerful state studio, China Film Group. According to THR‘s sources, the deal includes a concession from China to allow international firms to audit China’s box office for the first time (the MPAA has declined to comment)

“It is a forward step to show seriousness from the China side to the MPAA that they will honor the new amendment to let foreign firms audit box-offices,” a Beijing-based source with knowledge of the discussions tells THR.

Previously, box office data in China came from various private agencies or the state-affiliated distributors themselves, which regularly reported conflicting totals. The new website is said to be China’s attempt at a transparent, centrally managed box office data source covering cinemas nation-wide.

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The website is updated daily at 9:30pm, Beijing time. It is managed by the Special Fund Administration, a division of the China Film Bureau that collects and manages the 5 percent film fund tax that is charged on all movie tickets sales in China — proceeds of which are earmarked for developing the country’s movie industry.

The release of the site has also been hailed in the local Chinese press and by movie figures on social media as a positive development for the Chinese film industry.

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