The Chinese community is outraged by the new Versace T-shirts, which list the countries with the Italian brand's boutiques. In particular, the brand was accused of "undermining the sovereignty of China" due to the fact that Hong Kong and Macau are singled out as independent states on the products - they are special administrative regions of the PRC with partial autonomy.
Chinese actress Yang Mi, who became the ambassador of Versace only in June of this year, also spoke out against the company. She decided to end her relationship with the brand.
“I am very sorry that our company made a mistake, which is now being discussed in various social networks. I never wanted to show disrespect for the sovereignty of China, so I want to personally apologize for such an inaccuracy and any concerns that it could cause,”Donatella Versace wrote on her instagram.
Relations between Beijing and Hong Kong are especially tense today. In the administrative region of China, mass actions against new amendments to the extradition law have not abated since spring - they suggest that now Hong Kong will be able to extradite suspects of crimes, including the PRC.
This is not the first scandal involving European brands and China. So, in November last year, Dolce & Gabbana was accused of racism due to an advertisement in which an Asian model tasted Italian dishes with traditional chopsticks.