The response was as swift as it was resolute.
On Oct. 24, Jack Ma, the man behind China’s e-commerce behemoth Alibaba, gave a speech in Shanghai at the Bund Summit, a gathering billed as a “an open, pragmatic and internationally influential financial high-end communication platform.” In such a setting, 56-year-old Ma probably felt entitled to share a few insights from a career that has seen him take Alibaba from a company of less than 20 people—started in his flat in the coastal city of Hangzhou in 1999—to a tech giant that pulled in $71.985 billion in revenue in the fiscal year ending Mar. 31, 2020.
WNU Editor: This is where I share a little bit of my experience from dealing with China for the past 35 years.
China is a country that is politically ruled by a select few in the Communist Party with ties and relationships that go back decades. The country is also broken down provincially where each province does have a lot of power, but these provincial governments must still adhere to what the central government says, and Beijing must always be in the loop on what they are doing. The same goes for the large municipalities and cities. They have a lot of power, but they also must keep the provincial government (and in some cases the federal government) in the loop.
The country is economically run by about 800 families, and all of them have long term ties and relations with the Communist Party both federally and provincially. There is also a golden rule in China that applies to these families and to everyone else. You can start a business and you have the freedom to grow and make money. And if you succeed you must reward and give thanks to the Communist Party for your success. But …. and this is what has happened to Jack Ma …. you must never never never publicly criticize the Communist Party. Jack Ma made his comments to a public forum. And now he is going to be an example of.
My prediction. Jack Ma will be back, but a good part of his fortune will end up belonging (directly or indirectly) to some of the families who run the country.
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