Qantas changes website to recognize Chinese territories

AFP
Australia's Qantas has changed its website classification of Taiwan and Hong Kong from separate countries to Chinese territories.
AFP
Imaginechina

A Qantas Airways Boeing 747-400 jumbo jet airliner on final approach for landing in Richmond, British Columbia, Canada, on December 30, 2017.

Australia's Qantas has changed its website classification of Taiwan and Hong Kong from separate countries to Chinese territories after Chinese regulators scolded several foreign firms over similar listings.

The airline said Tuesday it was amending an "oversight," following in the footsteps of several other international corporations who were in the past week called out by Chinese authorities.

"Due to an oversight, some Chinese territories were incorrectly listed as 'countries' on parts of our website," a Qantas spokesperson told AFP. "We are correcting this error."

Shanghai's cyberspace authority last week sent a stern message to international firms when it ordered Marriott to shut down its Chinese website for a week and amend the "illegal" categorization of regions.

Spanish clothing giant Zara, Delta Air Lines and Medtronic -- a medical device company -- were also called out for listing Tibet, Taiwan and Hong Kong as separate countries.

The firms were urged to "immediately alter their illegal content and publish apologize."

They have since apologized and changed their websites.

In a separate rebuke, the Civil Aviation Administration of China noted in an online statement that Tibet and Taiwan were listed as countries on Delta's official website.

The airline issued a public apology and amended its classification of the regions.

The backlash was triggered on Chinese social media after Marriott established a customer questionnaire in Mandarin asking members of the hotel chain's rewards program to list their country of residence, offering Tibet, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan as possible options.

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