Alibaba says US-China trade war ends US jobs promise

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Alibaba's executive chairman Jack Ma has said that his promise to Donald Trump to create one million jobs in the U.S. is no longer valid and viable after Washington slapped Beijing with new round of tariffs on $200bn worth of goods.

For years, Ma has been pushing his vision of US small businesses selling to Chinese shoppers through his online marketplaces, but many experts have criticized his plan.

Ma said his commitment relied on friendly cooperation between the USA and China, and on the "rational and objective premise of bilateral trade".

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On Wednesday Ma told Xinhua, a Chinese news site, "The current situation has already destroyed the original premise". "If China and the United States maintain good economic and trade relations, there will be no problem at all in providing the United States with 1 million jobs or even 10 million jobs", Ma said. "There is no way to deliver the promise". Instead of building factories, or establishing Alibaba operation centers in the U.S., the Chinese billionaire expressed hope that small American businesses can sell goods to consumers in China thereby creating more domestic jobs in the US. However, the 54-year-old tech tycoon said that the trade war is "against China" and hit out at his country's policies, calling on Chinese leaders to see the damage inflicted by Trump's tariff salvo, as an opportunity to "upgrade".

Shares in Alibaba closed 3.5 per cent lower on Monday.

China responded a day later with tariffs on about $60-billion worth of us goods as planned, but reduced the level of tariffs it will collect on the products. Citing weak trade rules, he further added that it would be "a mess" for all parties involved and is likely to go on for "maybe 20 years", according to Reuters.

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Some experts said Ma's plan to bring 1 million jobs to the USA might have been overly ambitious in the first place.

But the trade dispute between the world´s top two economies has swiftly escalated since Trump took office, with a series of tit-for-tat tariffs brought on billions of dollars´ worth of goods by both countries.

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