Earlier this week Bloomberg reported that ten Apple products including iPad, iPad Mini, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro were removed from the government procurement list for July due to security concerns.
The Central Government Procurement Centre, as well as the finance ministry and Apple, said the company never applied to be on the list in the first place. The list that created the confusion this week involves energy-saving products, and is just one of a multitude of government procurement lists in China. Apple has never been on that list, the company said in emailed comments on Friday, declining to give more details.
"Even though Apple has the certification for energy-saving products... it has never provided the necessary verification material and agreements according to the regulations," said a Finance Ministry fax sent to Reuters. This statement was closely mirrored by the Central Government Procurement Centre in their own announcement.
According to the Central Government Procurement Centre website the government can still purchase Apple products even if they aren't on the energy-saving list.
Reuters notes that except for a brief period late Thursday, many of the products were available for purchase on the website. On Thursday, sales were temporarily halted for a monthly price adjustment.
"Every month we have one price adjustment to make sure the prices are aligned with market prices," said a person familiar with the procurement process, who attributed the confusion to a misunderstanding. "We'll stop purchases and then restart after they're aligned."