President-elect Donald Trump met today with Jack Ma, executive chairman of Alibaba, a Chinese-based ecommerce giant.
The primary topic of the meeting was jobs. According to Trump, the pair discussed the creation of one million new jobs in the US over five years through a deal that would see small businesses in America sell to Asia.
“We’re focused on small business,” Ma told reporters in the lobby of Trump Tower in Manhattan.
There will be $150 billion in cross-border e-commerce sales in China by 2020, according to eMarketer.
“Alibaba will create one million U.S. jobs by enabling 1 million American small businesses and farmers to sell American goods to China and Asian consumers on the Alibaba platform,” Ma’s company said in a statement.
While Alibaba is most often compared to Amazon due to its size and success, the company’s platform operates more similarly to Ebay or Etsy. It enables third-party sellers to create online micro-stores. Alibaba processes more than twice as many sale dollars as Amazon, but because of its business model has just 37,000 employees, compared with Amazon’s 239,000.
Alibaba has been eager to tap the US market for a while now, according to Ma.
Trump called Ma “a great entrepreneur” who “loves” the US.