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H&M says its working with China amid consumer boycott

Copenhagen, Mar 31 (efe-epa).- Swedish high-street fashion brand H&M on Wednesday said it was working with its colleagues in China to regain the “trust” of customers following a boycott of its products in the country in response to comments about alleged rights abuses in Xinjiang.

H&M and other companies such a Nike said in statements last year that they were “deeply concerned” about allegations that members of mainly-Muslim Uighur ethnic minority were being subjected to forced labor and clarified that they did not use Xinjiang cotton in their supply chain.

The company had also announced that it would cut ties with a Chinese supplier until allegations made in a report pointing to 82 Chinese and foreign companies benefiting from the forced transfer of members of the Uighur minority were clarified.

A backlash against the companies erupted when those statements resurfaced in recent weeks.

Addressing the situation Wednesday, H&M said: “We are working together with our colleagues in China to do everything we can to manage the current challenges and find a way forward.

“China is a very important market to us and our long-term commitment to the country remains strong.

“We want to be a responsible buyer, in China and elsewhere, and are now building forward-looking strategies and actively working on next steps with regards to material sourcing.”

It said that as a global company it complied with local laws in the countries it operated in.

“By working together with stakeholders and partners, we believe we can take steps in our joint efforts to develop the fashion industry, as well as serve our customers and act in a respectful way,” it concluded.  EFE-EPA


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