7 June 2024

The Chinese Embassy in Bangkok said in its Facebook post today (Friday) that the controversial sales promotion video for Lazada’s online shopping platform, which allegedly referenced a member of the Thai royal family, is unacceptable.

The comment is the first by the Embassy since the controversy began early this month, after the clip, showing two online influencers Aniwat Prathumthin and Thidaporn Chaokuwiang promoting the Lazada platform for clothes, was posted on TikTok. Thidaporn is seen dressed in a traditional Thai costume and siting in a wheelchair. Aniwat is seen accusing Thidaporn, who plays her mother of noble background, of stealing her clothes.

The wheelchair and the reference to Thidaporn’s noble ancestry were deemed, by some, to be a reference to a member of the royal family member who currently uses a wheelchair.

Lazada faces boycott in Thailand over controversial TikTok video, apologises

The Chinese Embassy’s Facebook post was in response to a question asking “Does the Chinese Embassy have any comment about the controversial video footage.”

The spokesperson responded by writing “the Chinese Embassy in Thailand has noticed the incident and shares the view that the content in the video is unacceptable.”

The comment from the Chinese Embassy has sparked a flood of comments from Thai netizens, expressing appreciation for the embassy’s position on this sensitive issue.

Lazada and the advertising agency which commissioned the clip have separately apologised for the incident, but Thai royalist groups are not satisfied.

Several retail outlets associated with royally-sponsored projects have come off the Lazada platform and informed their customers that they no longer accept orders via Lazada, while the Thai Army has boycotted the platform.

A complaint has been filed with the Technology Crime Suppression Division against Aniwat, for allegedly mocking a member of the royal family. The case is being investigated.