Zara defends IFC mall store closure after mainlanders’ misunderstanding
Fashion retailer Zara has reassured customers that its decision to close its IFC mall store in Hong Kong on Monday was not related to protests currently taking place in the city.
The statement emerged after social media users in Mainland China speculated that the store closures were a show of support for the demonstrators and to allow staff to participate.
“Zara has never made any comments or undertaken any actions related to a strike in Hong Kong,” read the firm’s statement on its Weibo account. “Zara does not back a strike and supports ‘one country, two systems’.”
The controversy was sparked after an image of a sign posted on the IFC mall store’s shutters was circulated online, apparently going viral.
Major businesses have come under close scrutiny for their actual or suspected support of the protestors, including Cathay Pacific, HSBC and PWC.
The protests have been held in the city over the past three months, and have become seen as a challenge to Beijing’s sovereignty over the territory.
Zara has declined to offer any explanation as to why the majority of its Hong Kong island stores were closed during the time in question.
However, the store reopened yesterday with new interior design to coincide with the opening of the Sephora store in a space carved out of Zara’s previous footprint in the mall.