The central government has prevented Vivo from exporting about 27,000 smartphones for more than a week as part of the Chinese company’s plan to move devices from India to neighboring markets.
The smartphones, manufactured by the India unit of Vivo Communications Technology Company, are being detained by the revenue intelligence unit, a branch of the Ministry of Finance, at New Delhi airport for allegedly misrepresentation of device models and their values. , many people familiar with the matter said. The shipment was worth nearly $15 million, according to one resident. These people declined to be named because the matter was not made public.
The Ministry of Finance and Vivo India did not respond to emails seeking comment.
An industry lobbying group called the government agency’s actions “unilateral and unjustified”.
“We ask for your urgent and kind intervention to stop this regrettable act,” Pankaj Mohindroo, President of the Electronics and Mobile Association of India, wrote in a letter dated December 2. sent to the top official from the Department of Technology, reviewed by Bloomberg. News.
“Such unwarranted actions by the enforcement agencies will reduce the incentive and incentive to manufacture and export electronic equipment from India.”
Tensions between India and China increased after the two countries clashed at the border in the summer of 2020. The Center has also stepped up monitoring of Chinese companies operating in India, including MG Motor. India Pvt Ltd of SAIC Motor Corp Ltd and local units of Xiaomi Corp. and ZTE Corp.
The blockade of Vivo shipments at the airport will likely worry other Chinese smartphone players in the country as the central government is pushing them to increase exports and build local supply chains. direction. That could threaten India’s ambitious goal of exporting $120 billion worth of electronic products by the end of March 2026.
To be sure, Vivo exported the first batch of Indian-made smartphones in early November to markets like Saudi Arabia and Thailand. But the latest setback could cloud Vivo’s future in the world’s second-largest smartphone market, where the company is under investigation for alleged money laundering, an allegation that has yet to be proven in court.
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