Ma tells US busi­ness lead­ers we can solve ‘trade is­sues’ The Alibaba founder takes cen­ter stage at an au­gu­ral sum­mit in Wash­ing­ton

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - BUSINESS - By DONG LESHUO in Wash­ing­ton leshuodong@chi­nadai­

Jack Ma, founder and ex­ec­u­tive chair­man of Alibaba Group Hold­ing Ltd, has called on a group of promi­nent busi­ness lead­ers in Wash­ing­ton to help “solve trade is­sues”.

The on­line en­tre­pre­neur led a party of 10 lead­ing Chi­nese busi­ness fig­ures at the au­gu­ral US-China Busi­ness Lead­ers Sum­mit on Tues­day.

Stephen Sch­warz­man, chair­man and CEO of the Black­stone Group LP, was part of a group of 10 United States­based busi­ness high-fliers at the gath­er­ing.

“As en­trepreneurs, we should uti­lize our wis­dom and ca­pac­ity to solve trade is­sues, rather than cre­ate trou­ble,” Ma said. “We’re here to solve the prob­lems of the fu­ture, not the prob­lems of yes­ter­day.”

Both sides agreed that as busi­ness lead­ers, they have crit­i­cal in­ter­ests in, and a re­spon­si­bil­ity to pro­mote, a steady and pos­i­tive eco­nomic re­la­tion­ship be­tween China and the US.

They also agreed to es­tab­lish an an­nual di­a­logue to of­fer both gov­ern­ments so­lu­tions to press­ing chal­lenges in their eco­nomic re­la­tion­ship, ac­cord­ing to a joint state­ment re­leased after the sum­mit.

The first meet­ing was marked by “con­struc­tive and pos­i­tive” di­a­logue, it said.

Ma first pro­posed the sum­mit to US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump in Jan­uary, with the pur­pose of en­cour­ag­ing busi­ness lead­ers from China and the US to get in­volved more ac­tively in the de­vel­op­ment of China-US eco­nomic re­la­tions.

“The eco­nomic di­a­logue be­tween China and the US should have a good vi­sion that helps to solve prob­lems rather than fight with each other,” Ma told the sum­mit.

Ear­lier this week, Trump cel­e­brated prod­ucts made in the United States, which was part of his “Amer­ica First” cam­paign pledge be­fore he was elected.

“We want to build, cre­ate and grow more prod­ucts in our coun­try us­ing Amer­i­can la­bor, Amer­i­can goods and Amer­i­can grit,” Trump said on Mon­day.

Ma tried to put that into per­spec­tive when he spoke to Chi­nese and US busi­ness­man.

He told them that he felt “Pres­i­dent Trump does lis­ten” and pointed out that the “world is all con­nected”.

“China is the best mar­ket for com­modi­ties that are made in Amer­ica,” Ma said.

“In the fu­ture, there will be less and less ‘Made in China’ or ‘Made in Amer­ica’. There will be ‘Made in in­ter­net’,” he added. “Ev­ery­thing in the world is con­nected. We call it e-com­merce to­day; we’ ll call it e-busi­ness in the fu­ture.”

Ma stressed that glob­al­iza­tion could not be stopped.

“The good thing is that I think Pres­i­dent Trump lis­tens,” he said. “Ini­tially, Pres­i­dent Trump and I had dif­fer­ent view­points.

“After I talked with him, he thought what I said made sense,” Ma added. “Then I found out he did change and now fol­lows a path that leads to a bet­ter way.”

... we should uti­lize our wis­dom and ca­pac­ity to solve trade is­sues ...” Jack Ma, founder and ex­ec­u­tive chair­man of Alibaba Group Hold­ing Ltd


Jack Ma, ex­ec­u­tive chair­man of Alibaba Group, chats with Stephen Sch­warz­man, chair­man of the Black­stone Group, dur­ing the US-China Busi­ness Lead­ers Sum­mit on Tues­day at the US Com­merce De­part­ment in Wash­ing­ton.

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