Jack Ma pledges to bring a mil­lion jobs to the US

Cape Times - - BUSINESS REPORT -

ALIBABA ex­ec­u­tive chair­man Jack Ma met US Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump on Mon­day and laid out the Chi­nese e-com­merce gi­ant’s new plan to bring one mil­lion small US busi­nesses onto its plat­form to sell to Chi­nese con­sumers over the next five years, an Alibaba spokesman said.

Alibaba Group Hold­ing ex­pected the ini­tia­tive to cre­ate one mil­lion US jobs as each com­pany adds a po­si­tion, com­pany spokesman Bob Christie said in a phone call. Alibaba has pre­vi­ously cam­paigned to bring more small US busi­nesses onto the com­pany’s sites, but this is the first time Ma has dis­cussed spe­cific tar­gets.

Trump and Ma emerged from their meet­ing at Trump Tower in New York to­gether.

The pres­i­dent-elect told re­porters they had a “great meet­ing” and would do great things to­gether. Ma called Trump “smart” and “open­minded”.

Ma said the two mainly dis­cussed sup­port­ing small busi­nesses, es­pe­cially in the Mid­west, such as farm­ers and small cloth­ing mak­ers, who could tap the Chi­nese mar­ket di­rectly through Alibaba.

The com­pany has in re­cent years been ag­gres­sively court­ing for­eign brands to set up Tmall stores to sell to China’s vast mid­dle class by smooth­ing out Chi­nese sales, pay­ment and ship­ping pro­cesses.

Trump of­ten tar­geted China in the elec­tion cam­paign, blam­ing Bei­jing for US job losses. “It’s im­por­tant, given the anti-China rhetoric that has been com­ing out, to in­noc­u­late the com­pany and him­self from that,” said Dun­can Clark, chair­man of in­vest­ment ad­vi­sory firm BDA China, of Ma’s meet­ing with Trump. – Reuters

PIC­TURE: BLOOMBERG

Bil­lion­aire Jack Ma, chair­man of Alibaba Group, ar­rives in the lobby of Trump Tower in New York. The pres­i­dent-elect told re­porters they had a “great meet­ing” and would do great things to­gether. Ma called Trump “smart” and “open-minded”.

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