Jack Ma makes a grim prediction about US-China trade war

Cornelia Mascio
Settembre 19, 2018

The trade war between the USA and China could go on for 20 more years, outlasting Donald Trump's presidency, e-commerce giant Alibaba's founder and billionaire Jack Ma warned Tuesday.

"This commitment is based on friendly China-US cooperation and the rational and objective premise of bilateral trade", Ma told Xinhua.

The new round of tariffs by Beijing will affect over 5,000 USA goods, ranging from meat, chemicals, nuts, alcoholic drinks, clothes, machinery, furniture and automobile parts, in a move that would further escalate the trade war between the world's largest two economies. Ma said. "There is no way to deliver the promise". "But if there is no trade between China, the 1 million jobs will be gone too". Trade relations have since deteriorated between China and the United States in a tit-for-tat escalation in tariffs. Ma referred to this continuing trade debacle in a call on Tuesday with investors as a "mess". Ma suggested on Tuesday that in the medium term, production and supply chain elements for Chinese business be shifted to other countries rather than the US.

Speaking at an investor day conference in Hangzhou, Ma said China should focus on strengthening its economic ties with countries in Southeast Asia and Africa, and depend less on the U.S.in order to deal with the trade dispute.

Ma, who recently announced that he will be stepping down as Alibaba's chairman within a year, also told Xinhua that despite the current fiction, he will "not stop working hard to contribute to the healthy development of China-US trade".

The tariffs imposed by the U.S. are set to come into effect from September 24 with the 10% level, which will be increased to 25% from next year. With all this fuss about the trade relations between the United States and China, this is bound to be just beginning.

As Alibaba grows into new markets, there will always be some sort of new burden they will have to accept. Ma made a call to postpone expansion into the United States, but itis hard to see Alibaba not expanding into the USA market at some point in the future.

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