Alibaba Executive Chairman Jack Ma met U.S. President-elect Donald Trump on Monday and laid out the Chinese e-commerce company's new plan to bring a million small U.S. businesses onto its platform to sell to Chinese consumers over the next five year, an Alibaba spokesman said.
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd expects the initiative to create a million U.S. jobs as each company adds a position, company spokesman Bob Christie said in a phone call.
Trump and Ma emerged from their meeting at Trump Tower in New York together. The president-elect told reporters they had a "great meeting" and would do great things together. Ma called Trump "smart" and "open-minded." He said the two mainly discussed supporting small businesses, especially in the Midwest.
Ma said that businesses such as farmers and small clothing makers could tap the Chinese market directly through Alibaba.
He called the meeting with Trump "very productive."
"We mainly talked about small business and young people and American agriculture products to china. And we also think, that the China and U.S. relationship should be strengthened, should be more friendly," he said.
(Reporting by Peter Henderson, David Alexander, Doina Chiacu and Laila Kearney; Editing by Richard Chang)