Arrest of Vivo Executives, Including Chinese National, Deepens India-China Tensions.

On October 11, 2023, the Indian financial crimes agency made a significant move by arresting four executives of the Chinese smartphone giant Vivo, including one Chinese national, on charges of money laundering. The arrests come almost a year after authorities raided Vivo’s office and accused the company of engaging in illegal remittances from India to China.

Vivo, the second-largest smartphone brand in India, has firmly denied these allegations and announced its intent to “exercise all available legal options” to support its employee, Andrew Kuang, one of those arrested in connection with the case.

This arrest marks the latest development in a series of legal challenges facing Vivo in India. The company has been accused of customs evasion by the Indian tax enforcement agency and has also come under scrutiny for allegedly assisting in the illegal transfer of funds to NewsClick, a news portal currently under investigation on charges of propagating Chinese propaganda.

The detention of a Chinese national in this case has raised concerns and provoked outrage among some in China. The Chinese embassy in India has issued a statement calling for the immediate release of the arrested individuals and has urged Indian authorities to “protect the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese citizens and companies.”

This incident further exacerbates already strained relations between India and China, which were severely tested by a deadly border clash in 2020. In the aftermath of the border conflict, India banned hundreds of Chinese apps, including TikTok, in a move that significantly impacted Chinese technology companies’ operations in the Indian market.







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