TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- In the latest fiasco by multinational corporations in confusing the status of China and Taiwan as separate, sovereign nations on their websites, Italian apparel company Moncler mistakenly listed China as "Republic of China," and itemized Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau as separate countries.
Under both its "Choose a Country" option on its mobile version and under its "Store Locator" section on its desktop version, Moncler was found to be listing China as "Republic of China," the current official name of the country of Taiwan, reported Liberty Times. It also listed Macau, Hong Kong and Taiwan as separate countries.
Screen capture of desktop version of Moncler's "Store Locator."
Taiwan is an independent, sovereign nation officially known as the Republic of China (ROC), while China is officially known as the People's Republic of China (PRC). On the other hand, Hong Kong and Macau are special administrative regions (SAR) of China, after their handover from their previous colonial owners back to Beijing in 1997 and 1999, respectively.
Screen capture of Moncler's "Choose a Country" option.
In listing Republic of China and Taiwan as two separate entities, it was inadvertently making the the political statement that Taiwan and the Republic of China are separate countries, while not listing China at all. Moncler not only listed China as the Republic of China, but also all 24 branches of its stores across China, in the process turning the clock back to 1949.
China was known as the Republic of China when it was led by led by Kuomingtang (KMT) from 1912 to 1949, while after 1949 the name in effect only applied to the country of Taiwan and couple outer islands, though Taiwan officially does still claim all of China as the Republic of China in its constitution.
After being defeated by the communists in 1949, the KMT fled to Taiwan, where the Republic of China remains, though it is currently ruled by the Democratic Progressive Party, and many of its inhabitants not longer consider themselves Chinese. China, on the other hand, considers Taiwan (ROC) to be a rogue province that must be unified with the PRC one day, by force if necessary.
At the time of publication, Moncler had managed to change the name from the Republic of China to China and had included Hong Kong as part of China, but was still listing both Macau and Taiwan as separate countries on both its desktop and mobile versions.
This latest incident, comes after Zara, Delta Air Lines, Marriott, and Hyatt were targeted by authorities and netizens in China for listing Taiwan as a separate country. While a number of U.S. government websites have been been busy taking down the flag of Taiwan or including it as part of China in maps.