Alibaba predicts 20 years of ‘enviable’ growth for China

Beijing: The Chinese economy will overcome the difficulties it is facing currently and will continue to occupy an enviable position over the next two decades, Jack Ma, founder and chairman of e-commerce giant Alibaba, said on Wednesday.

China will face “a difficult three to five years” but continue growing at a rate “enviable to most other major economies for another 15 to 20 years”, Efe news quoted Ma as saying.

“The traditional industries are struggling, but we also see growth in domestic consumption, the services industry and the hi-tech sector, and young talents are flocking to these areas,” Ma said.

Ma, a symbol of the success of the private sector in China in recent years, added the government is trying to revive the national economy through monetary and supply-oriented policies when “the most important thing is entrepreneurship”.

He admitted the slowing down of the Chinese economy had caused several foreign investors to exit but added this had generated new opportunities as history has proved that those who invested in the country during difficult times have always got good returns.

Ma also justified the slowing down of China’s GDP, and asserted, “There is no reason to expect that an economy of such size can maintain such a growth rate indefinitely nor is it good for China to continue to grow at such speed.”

“As the world’s second-largest economy, China is like an ocean liner … we have to choose either to not slow down and overturn the ship, or to slow a bit to make the turn,” said the Chinese millionaire, whose company made the biggest stock market debut in Wall Street history in September 2014.

Ma also responded to conjectures that the Chinese GDP will not grow around seven percent as the government claims, but at five percent.

“But even with five percent growth, there is no other economy of such size growing at that speed in today’s world,” Ma said.