Taipei, Nov. 15 (CNA) The National Communications Commission (NCC) has halted the sale of three smartphone models produced by Huawei Technologies Co. of China, saying a software upgrade had renamed Taiwan as "Taiwan, China."
The temporary ban, which extends to five telecom companies in Taiwan that sell the P30, P30 Pro and Nova 5T phones, may become permanent if the issue is not resolved, the NCC said Thursday.
Following the upgrade of the software on the three phone models, the time zone and contact apps now list Taiwan as "Taiwan, China," the NCC said.
The designation has sparked controversy among consumers in Taiwan, as China continues its efforts to convince global businesses and foreign government refer to Taiwan as "Taiwan, China," the NCC said.
Against that backdrop, the NCC said, Chunghwa Telecom Co., Taiwan Mobile Co., EasTone Telecommunications Co., Taiwan Star Telecom Co. and Asia Pacific Telecom Co., have been asked to remove the three Huawei phones from their store shelves until Taiwan's designation is corrected.
The ban also applies to Huawei's sales agent in Taiwan, Xunwei Technology Co., the NCC said, citing a need to protect Taiwan's national sovereignty and integrity.
In response, Xunwei said it has notified Huawei, which has promised to make the correction as soon as possible.
The five telecom operators, meanwhile, said the NCC ban will not affect their sales significantly, as they had already reduced their inventories of Huawei smartphones amid the sanctions imposed on the company by the United States.
Huawei unveiled its latest flagship phone -- the Mate 30 -- in Taiwan Thursday, saying there were no issues of Taiwan's designation on that model.
Meanwhile, the NCC said, it has asked all smartphone and tablet computer brands in the country to make sure that their designation of Taiwan is correct on their products.