EXO‘s Lay has terminated his endorsement contract with Samsung Electronics due to the company’s outlook on the “One China Policy”. The policy states that there is only one Chinese government and that Taiwan is a breakaway province that will be reunified with the mainland one day.
Lay’s Chinese agency announced through Weibo that the flags on Samsung Electronics’s global website does not adhere to the “One China Policy”. Therefore, Lay will no longer be an endorsement model for Samsung.
[Samsung Electronics] has severely offended the national feelings of our Chinese compatriots by being ambiguous about the integrity of our sovereignty and territory.
We would like to express our regret, but we will not tolerate this. We have looked into all of the brands that [Lay] models for.
— Lay’s Chinese Agency
Samsung Electronics had Hong Kong and Taiwan listed as separate countries on their website by displaying their individual flags instead of having them encompassed under the Chinese flag.
Many global brands have been criticized by the Chinese netizens after selling clothes that listed Hong Kong and Taiwan as separate countries. Many Chinese celebrities have been canceling their endorsements for these brands.
Coach and Givenchy apologized on Monday after Chinese netizens criticized them for selling clothes that mislabeled Hong Kong and Taiwan as separate countries, a day after Versace apologized and lost its Chinese brand ambassador over a similar offense. https://t.co/nnIbtxb6Ak pic.twitter.com/tTTtv9JK7z
— China News 中国新闻网 (@Echinanews) August 13, 2019
Lay became Samsung Electronic’s spokesmodel since December 2018. Although he has canceled his contract with Samsung, he has yet to make a decision about Calvin Klein, which is another company that Chinese netizens are boycotting for the same issue.
Lay has also canceled his concert in Hong Kong due to the recent political protests.
— Lay Zhang (@zyxzjx) December 31, 2018