The Hanoitimes - The toy was sold in Shopee, an mobile-first marketplace platform present in Vietnam since 2016.
The toy named “Plant flags worldwide” sold on Shopee, an online commerce website in Vietnam, has been recalled after customers complained that the toy depicts wrongfully the country’s sovereignty.
On the product’s surface, Vietnam’s two archipelagoes Paracels and Spratlys have been titled as part of the South China Sea, which Vietnam calls the East Sea and accompanied with the image of “nine-dash line”.
The product was introduced to be “suitable for children above three”. The players will stick the right flags in poles representing 48 countries in a map in order to “explore the world’s geography”.
The toy's image on Shopee's website
Nguyen Huu Tuan, head of the E-commerce Management Department under Vietnam Ministry of Industry and Trade, told Vnexpress that the authority has seized 30 boxes of the toy to clarify the issue.
The department also required Shopee to immediately remove the toy’s image off its website.
Regarding the online platform’s responsibility, Tuan said, the authority has asked Shopee to report specifically and issue measures by August 15.
For its part, Shopee said it had completely removed the product off its website and pledged to refund the customers who bought the toy.
The firm also draw out plans to enhance awareness and knowledge of its dealers about the quality and information of products.
Shopee is an online commerce platform launched in Singapore in 2015 and belongs to Garena Group, a leading Singapore-based Internet platform provider. The firm entered Vietnam in 2016. Starting as a Customer to Customer (C2C) business for mobile device, Shopee has shifted its focus to the Business to Customer (B2C) model with respective space for giant brands offered on it website.
By the end of 2017, the Shopee app was download 80 million times globally, of which more than five million came from Vietnam.
The "nine-dash line”, a cow tongue-shaped imaginary line, was illegally created by China to claim its sovereignty over about 80% of the East Sea, including Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly) islands.