Swedish fashion giant H&M has reopened its official store on Alibaba’sTmaill e-commece platform 16 months after the Chinese site took it down following the brand's criticisms of human rights abuses in Xinjiang.
Tmall and many other Chinese platforms and apps scrubbed references to the fashion brand when it was revealed that H&M had pledged not to source cotton from China’s 's far western Xinjiang region, citing concerns about human rights abuses there.
UN experts and rights groups estimate over a million people, mainly Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities, have been detained in recent years in a vast system of camps in Xinjiang. China denies all accusations of abuse.
H&M, the world's second-biggest fast-fashion retailer, first opened on Tmall in March 2018.
It was one of many Western brands caught up in the Xinjiang cotton controversy in March last year and was disproportionately impacted as one of the first to be targeted by netizens on Chinese social media.
While other brands such as Nike, Adidas, Burberry and Converse saw celebrity ambassadors sever ties over their public commitments not to use Xinjiang cotton, H&M was the only brand to see its online identity in China removed to such an extent.