The Chinese basketball star Yao Ming, who plays in the US NBA, has settled his lawsuit against The Coca-Cola Company. Yao had accused Coke's Chinese subsidiary of using his image on its cans without his permission.

Following an apology from Coke, Yao said: "This matter is over. We have to move on."

Yao has a marketing agreement with PepsiCo. However, Coke used his image as part of its agreement with the Chinese basketball team.

Yao's lawsuit sought only a symbolic ¥1 (12 US cents) in damages and an apology.

Chinese press reports quoted from a statement from Coca-Cola that cited its sponsorship of China's national team but acknowledged it was wrong for not asking Yao for permission first.

"On the basis of the fact that Coca-Cola (China) Beverages Ltd did not seek Yao Ming's consent in advance of its use of Yao Ming's portrait and name on the packaging of its products, Coca-Cola (China) Beverages Ltd. apologizes to Yao Ming for such conduct," the company said.