Due to the recent visit by U.S. official Nancy Pelosi to Taipei, the capital of Taiwan, tensions between China and USA have risen rapidly. In light of this event, Apple has urged its suppliers to make sure that goods from Taiwan being transported to China are in line with the Chinese customs laws to prevent them from being fined or rejected.
The Cupertino tech firm has cautioned suppliers that China has now started strictly enforcing a regulation that any Taiwan-made parts and components have to be labeled as either “Taiwan, China” or “Chinese Taipei”. This regulation enforces China's view that Taiwan is part of its territory.
Not complying with these laws may mean the cargo could be scrutinized and held by Chinese custom officials. A fine of up to 4,000 yuan (~$592) could be imposed, and the shipment could even be rejected.
This move has come at a delicate time for Apple, as suppliers are assembling components that will be used in its next iPhones and other products set to be released later this year. To avoid further disruptions in the supply chain, Apple has also notified suppliers to have contingency plans available to prepare for the worst. This includes quickly reviewing and fixing the labels of the cartons shipping from Taiwan to China, if required.
This message from Apple comes after shipments from Taiwan to China at its Pegatron facility were held for examination to check if the import declaration forms or cartons were branded with the words “Taiwan” or “Republic of China”. Pegatron is one of Apple's major iPhone assemblers, which further signifies the importance of getting the labeling on its cargo right.
Source: Nikkei Asia