China will delay a controversial policy to force manufacturers to install mandatory filtering software on all new computers, state news agency Xinhua said on Tuesday.

The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology's climbdown on the mandatory installation of the Green Dam Youth Escort filter comes just a day before the order was due to come into effect.

The software was designed to block objectionable material including pornography, but the policy stoked opposition among industry groups, human rights organizations and foreign governments amid fears it could strengthen government efforts to censor politically sensitive information.

(Reporting by David Stanway, Editing by Alex Richardson)