According to Reuters on July 13, an Indian court lifted a freeze on smartphone maker vivo’s bank accounts imposed by the country’s financial crime agency and ordered the Chinese company to provide a bank guarantee of $119 million.
It comes after 119 bank accounts linked to vivo’s Indian operations and its affiliates, which hold 4.65 billion Indian rupees ($58.59 million), were blocked as part of the investigation into an alleged money laundering case by vivo.
Vivo has also previously sought a court in New Delhi to reverse the decision of the country’s law enforcement agencies to freeze its bank accounts. According to court documents, vivo said it was illegal and would damage the company’s business operations.
Another report by Reuters on July 13 showed that an investigation by India’s Directorate of Revenue Intelligence has found that Chinese smartphone maker OPPO evaded customs duties totaling more than 43.9 billion rupees ($551 million).
Indian investigators found evidence that OPPO had wrongfully used duty exemptions for items imported for use in mobile phone production. Further, the company had made royalty payments which were not added to the transaction value of imported goods, as required by Indian law.
A notice has been issued to OPPO India demanding the required customs duty. The Revenue Intelligence wing has also proposed penalties on OPPO India, its employees and OPPO China, the government statement said, without elaborating.
Since the beginning of this year, many Chinese smartphone manufacturers, including Huawei and Xiaomi, have been investigated by several departments within the Indian government.