2022 07 07T134047Z 2068782068 RC207V9NGQI8 RTRMADP 3 INDIA VIVO PROBE

India keeps exporting 27,000 Vivo phones in conflict with China

Indian authorities prevented VivoAbout 27,000 smartphones were exported for more than a week, in a setback for the Chinese company’s plan to ship the devices from India to neighboring markets.

The smartphones, manufactured by the India unit of Vivo Communications Technology Co. , is being held at New Delhi Airport by the Indian Revenue Intelligence Unit, a branch of the Ministry of Finance, over alleged misdisclosure of device models and their value, to several persons. knowledgeable, he said. The shipment is worth nearly $15 million, according to one of the people. The people declined to be named because it is not public.

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An industry pressure group called the government agency’s actions “one-sided and unreasonable”.

“We ask for your kind and urgent intervention to stop this deplorable action,” Pankaj Mohindro, president of the Cellular and Electronics Association of India, wrote in a December 2 letter to senior bureaucrats in India’s Technology Ministry, which was reviewed by Bloomberg News. .

“Such unwarranted actions by the enforcement agencies will defuse the drive and motive to encourage electronics manufacturing and exports from India.”

Extreme scrutiny

The political chasm between India and China widened after the two nuclear-armed nations clashed over a disputed Himalayan border in the summer of 2020. New Delhi also stepped up scrutiny of Chinese companies operating in India including SAIC Motor Corp Ltd’s MG Motor India Pvt Ltd, and local units in Xiaomi Corp. and ZTE Corp.

Banning Vivo shipments at the airport is likely to unnerve other Chinese smartphone players in India, where a nationalist government, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is pushing them to boost exports and build up domestic supply chains. This could threaten India’s ambitious target of exporting $120 billion worth of electronic products by the end of March 2026.

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Sure enough, Vivo exported its first batch of Indian smartphones in early November to markets like Saudi Arabia and Thailand. But the latest hurdle could overshadow Vivo’s future in the world’s second-largest smartphone market, where the company is already under scrutiny for alleged money laundering, an allegation that has yet to be proven in court.