Home / Opinion / Quick Edit /  Xiaomi’s whammy

Few success stories match that of China’s Xiaomi, the 2010-started smartphone maker that stormed the global market, logged revenues of $51.6 billion in 2021 and looks poised to give Samsung, if not Apple, a scare. In India, despite New Delhi’s testy relations with Beijing, it’s the biggest seller. Estimates suggest Xiaomi accounted for between a fifth and fourth of the over 160 million units sold here last year, having whipped past Samsung a few years ago. On Saturday, Indian authorities froze some of its local money on alleged violations of foreign-exchange rules, while the company claimed to be in firm compliance.

It is important that India’s enforcement action has a clear case to back it up before any impression of persecution gets a chance to set in globally at a time that geopolitics threatens globalization through arbitrary weaponization of economic links, a situation that needs a roll-back for the maximization of prosperity. Our diplomats are right to point out the West’s uneven responses to Chinese versus Russian aggression. Yet, for India’s stance on sanctions to assume principled heft, the country must clearly be seen to eschew all weapons for which neither rules nor clarity exist.

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