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China’s Xiaomi says it will protect business interests after assets in India are frozen

Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi said it was “disappointed” with an Indian order that froze $682 million of its assets.

Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi Corp said on Sunday it was “disappointed” with an Indian order that froze $682 million of its assets and would continue to protect its interests.

An Indian appellate body on Friday confirmed an April order from India’s Federal Agency for Combating Financial Crime, the Enforcement Directorate, to seize Rs 55.51 billion, saying an investigation revealed that Xiaomi had made illegal transfers of funds to foreign entities by passing them on as royalty payments.

The Chinese smart device company said in a statement on Sunday that more than 84% of the 55.51 billion Indian rupees seized by the enforcement directorate earlier this year was the royalty payment made to US chipset company Qualcomm Group.

“We will continue to use all means to protect the reputation and interests of the company and our stakeholders,” it said.

The company said that Xiaomi India is an affiliate and one of the companies of the Xiaomi Group, which has signed a legal agreement with Qualcomm to grant IP licenses for the production of smartphones.

Both Xiaomi and Qualcomm believe it is a legitimate commercial arrangement for Xiaomi India to pay Qualcomm royalties, the statement said.

With a share of 18% each, Xiaomi and Samsung jointly lead the smartphone market in India, the second largest in the world after China, according to data from Counterpoint Research.

Many Chinese companies are struggling to do business in India due to political tensions following a border dispute in 2020.

India has raised security concerns by banning more than 300 Chinese apps since then, including popular apps like TikTok, and has also tightened rules on Chinese companies investing in India.

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