Muji apologises for Shanghai slur

Japanese retailer Muji has issued an apology to the Chinese people for referring to an historic neighbourhood in Shanghai as the “French Concession” in a social media post.

The term refers to a time in history when parts of the city were conceded to foreign countries, a period many Chinese people view as an insult to China’s sovereignty. The name is still commonly used in the city for the district that still retains some of its former European character, and where Muji’s flagship store is now located.

Some social media users were angered by the firm’s use of the term in promoting a walking tour around the neighbourhood.

The statement issued by Muji in apology for using the term read: “We had no intention of hurting Chinese people’s feelings. We fully respect China’s culture and history.” 

The brand’s walking tour promotion has been cancelled and the offending post removed.

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