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July 2, 2020

Indian border dispute slows MG imports from China

India's additional scrutiny of imports from China has has affected MG Motor, owned by China's SAIC, which has some shipments stuck at a port in southern India, a source "close to the company" told the Reuters news agency.

By Olly Wehring

India's additional scrutiny of imports from China has has affected MG Motor, owned by China's SAIC, which has some shipments stuck at a port in southern India, a source "close to the company" told the Reuters news agency.

Customs officers at Indian ports have held back shipments from China and sought additional clearances after deadly clashes at the disputed Himalayan border last month. The checks have been imposed without any formal order, the report said.

MG started selling cars in India last year and has committed US$650m in investments, the report said.

"The whole (auto) industry will be impacted if components are stuck," Reuters' source said.

Two officials at the Indian finance ministry, which oversees the customs department, told the news agency the inspection measures were temporary and would ease soon.

"We cannot keep checking 100% of shipments forever… Shipments of non Chinese companies being impacted will be cleared on priority," one official said.

Reuters noted, while the exact impact of the disruptions on Indian business was not immediately clear, the delays came when companies in India had already been battling disrupted supply chains due to coronavirus shutdowns in recent months.

Business activity had only just begun to pick up.

China's commerce ministry it hoped India would correct its discriminatory actions against Chinese companies immediately, after India banned some Chinese mobile apps amid the border crisis.

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