BEIJING (Reuters) - A Chinese appeals court has upheld a ban on a company from selling land on the moon, ruling that "celestial bodies" could not be anyone's property, state media said on Saturday
Lunar Embassy to China, a Beijing-based company that sold plots of lunar land to individuals, sued the Beijing Administration of Industry and Commerce which revoked its business licence and fined it 50,000 yuan (3,300 pounds) in October 2005.
Haidian District People's Court ruled against the company in November 2005. On Friday, the Beijing First Intermediate People's Court upheld that decision, Xinhua news agency said.
The court cited an international treaty that China signed in 1983.
"The treaty states that outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, is not subject to national appropriation by claim of sovereignty, by means of use or occupation, or by other means... The exploration and use of outer space shall be carried out for the benefit and in the interests of all countries," Xinhua said.
The company offered to sell individuals ownership of an acre of lunar land for 298 yuan each.
"Within three days of opening for business, it was reported that 34 clients had bought 49 acres of land, earning the company more than 14,000 yuan.
"There was no indication if the company provided discounts to clients who bought multiple plots."