Apple CEO has met China's top market regulator, a statement said Friday, a week after the tech giant faced heavy criticism over an app Beijing accused of supporting Hong Kong protesters.
Apple removed HKmap.live from the App Store following a barrage of criticism from Beijing, which is increasing pressure on foreign companies considered to support the pro-democracy movement in the semi-autonomous city.
Chinese state media said the app allowed protesters in Hong Kong to track police – but the move to withdraw it led to accusations the company was putting business interests on human rights.
According to a statement on the China State Administration for Market Regulation's website, Tim Cook met in Beijing on Thursday with Xiao Yaqing, Director General of the State Administration of Market Regulation.
The two sides exchanged on a wide range of topics, including expansion of investment and business development in China, protection of consumer rights and interests and fulfillment of corporate social responsibility, "the statement said.
Communist Party's speech tube The People & # 39; s Daily said last week in an opinion that Apple was storing the app "mixed business with politics and even illegal acts."
"Apple's approval of the app obviously helps insurgents," the article states. " Does this mean Apple intended to be an accomplice to the rebels? "
Cook defended last week's decision to remove the app in an email email to Apple employees who were shared online, saying they received "reliable information" that the app was being used "maliciously to target individual officers for violence and to victimize individuals and property. "
The makers of HKmap.live were buzzed by Apple's removal as" censorship "and" clearly a political decision to suppress freedom. ”
Other international brands have faced criticism in China during the tense summer turmoil in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong airline Cathay Pacific, jewelry brand Tiffany, and the National Basketball Association all met with distrust to look to support the protests.
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