Oops; Gap apologizes for T-shirt's wrong China map

Gap 'terribly sorry' over T-shirt China map without Taiwan

"Upon the realization that one of our T-shirts sold in some overseas markets mistakenly failed to reflect the correct map of China, we urgently launched an internal investigation across the group and have chose to immediately pull back this T-shirt from all the concerned global markets", Gap said in a statement.

The state-run Global Times newspaper said the map also omitted South Tibet and the South China Sea, and that the issue sparked a social media frenzy in China after a photo was posted of the shirt at an outlet store in Canada.

"Gap Inc. respects China's sovereignty and territorial integrity".

The company, through a prepared statement posted on Weibo, said that it respects the territorial integrity and sovereignty of China and learned that a T-shirt in its Gap brand sold in some markets overseas did not reflect a map of China that was correct in design. It also apologised for "this unintentional mistake and is now conducting internal investigations to quickly rectify this mistake".

Gap's apology comes as China has been ramping up efforts to police language used to describe Chinese-claimed territories such as Taiwan. It was unclear if the shirts in all of Gap's markets worldwide would also be destroyed.

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The US clothing brand is the latest global company to find itself in hot water over Chinese territorial issues. "We're now conducting an internal inspection".

But this isn't the first time an worldwide company has found itself in hot water over China territorial issues.

Gap did not say if the product would be pulled from other markets where it is being sold.

Delta Air Lines, hotel operator Marriott, fashion brand Zara and other companies have apologized to China for referring to Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Tibet as countries on websites or promotional material. Each of the companies has subsequently apologized.

Beijing has also been pressuring worldwide companies to change their websites outside China to fit its views, prompting a clash with the U.S. government. "We are committed to more rigorous reviews in the future to avoid similar incidents again".

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