Beijing on Monday dismissed US and European criticism of new rules that ban news agencies from dealing directly with clients in China, the Financial Times reported. The rules, issued by Xinhua, Beijing's propaganda arm and China's biggest news agency, may threaten the China businesses of agencies such as Reuters, Dow Jones and Bloomberg. Washington said the new policies are "incompatible with China's aspirations to build a modern information-based economy" and were a breach of fundamental rights. The European Commission expressed "strong opposition" to "this kind of restrictive practice". International media freedom advocates and human rights organizations have also condemned the rules. But Qin Gang, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesman, said the new rules were intended to promote the "healthy and orderly dissemination of news, while "protecting the lawful rights and interests of foreign news agencies and their domestic clients".