US confectionery giant Mars Wrigley has apologized and said it “respects Chinese sovereignty” after an ad for Snickers chocolate bars featured Taiwan as a “country”.
China says the island of 23 million people, even if ruled by a rival Chinese regime, must be reunited with the rest of the national territory. He opposes any international recognition of Taipei.
The promotional video for an event featuring Snickers and South Korean music group BTS ended with the phrase “only available in the following countries”, showing the flags of South Korea, Malaysia and the Republic of China (Taiwan).
This video, which was not intended to be shown in the mainland Chinese market, was nevertheless spotted by Chinese netizens, causing controversy on social media.
“We have taken note of reports related to a Snickers event being held in parts of Asia,” Mars Wrigley said Friday night in a statement posted on Snickers China’s official Weibo social media account.
“We take this very seriously and sincerely apologize,” the confectionary giant continued, stressing that we “respect China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”
Snickers China then posted an additional message on its Weibo account: “There is only one China in the world, and Taiwan is an integral part of Chinese territory.”
This case comes amid Beijing-Taipei tensions following the visit to the island by US Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi, a visit that China is currently responding to with large-scale military trainings around Taiwan.
Mars Wrigley is not the first foreign company to apologize to China after diplomatic blunders for fear of losing access to the huge Chinese market.
In 2019, Dior, owned by the French giant and the world’s number one luxury brand LVMH, apologized after using a map of China that omitted Taiwan during a presentation at a Chinese university.
Last year, US hotel giant Marriott’s website was blocked for a week in China. Cause; The company posted an online questionnaire wandering around Chinese regions of Tibet and Hong Kong, but also Taiwan, and so many different countries.
Source: News Beast