Versace loses Chinese brand ambassador over t-shirt designs listing Hong Kong as a country

That's a bit of a touchy topic at the moment.

Andrew Koay| August 11, 02:54 PM

Versace's brand ambassador in China has ended her relationship with the fashion label.

According to Bloomberg, Chinese actress Yang Mi decided to cease the partnership after controversy was sparked online over a t-shirt design by the luxury fashion label.

Defying China

The design was deemed to have defied China's "One China" policy.

The T-shirt had listed both Hong Kong and Macau as countries rather than cities.

Both are special administrative regions of China, under the Chinese government.

Harmed China's integrity

Yang issued a statement through the official Weibo account of Jiaxing Xingguang, the actress’s studio.

The statement said that Versace had harmed China’s sovereign and territorial integrity, reported Bloomberg.

Yang was Versace's first Chinese brand ambassador.

Through its own Weibo account, Versace has apologised, admitting that it was the "wrong design".

It also said that the T-shirts had no longer been on sale since July 24 and they have since been "destroyed".

"One China"

According to the BBC, China's "One China" policy represents Beijing's official position that there is only one Chinese government.

Beijing, under the "One China" principle, views Hong Kong, Macau, and even Taiwan as inalienable parts of the mainland.

The policy dictates Chinese diplomacy in the international arena where countries are expected to only recognise and have formal ties with China rather than Taiwan, which China sees as a breakaway province that will be reunified with the mainland one day.

Tension with Hong Kong

The controversy also follows recent escalating conflict between Hong Kong and China, which erupted after Hong Kong protestors deemed an attempt to introduce an extradition bill as a sign of China violating the one country two systems agreement.

According to The Economist, the agreement allows Hong Kong to maintain its independent legal systems and police forces, whilst still being a region under Beijing.

Top image from Trending Weibo and @lie98988 Twitter accounts