by WorldTribune Staff, November 28, 2018
Upon joining the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), members must cite an oath: “Be loyal to the party, work actively, fight for communism all one’s life, always be prepared to sacrifice everything for the party and people, and never betray the party.”
Jack Ma, China’s wealthiest man, has recited the oath. Ma’s CCP membership was revealed in a recent report by the party’s official mouthpiece, the People’s Daily.
Ma, founder of Chinese tech giant Alibaba, has played a key role in pushing supreme leader Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiative, the report said.
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Ma, whose CCP membership had not been known until now, has been honored as one of the “outstanding builders of socialism with Chinese characteristics in Zhejiang Province,” where Alibaba is based, the daily said.
Ma did not reveal his Communist Party membership in paperwork filed for Alibaba’s 2014 initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange. It is not known if Ma was a CCP member at the time.
Ma is not the first super-rich Chinese capitalist to join the party, which counts property titan Xu Jiayin and Wanda Group founder Wang Jianlin among its billionaire members, AFP reported on Nov. 27.
In his push to expand the Communist Party’s influence in private business, Xi is requiring any company with more than three party members to set up a party cell, or lacking numbers, join with nearby firms, the AFP report said. Three in four private companies already host party organizations.
“We must do a good job in the education and management of party members and guide them to play an active role,” Xi told officials in Shanghai earlier this month.
Ma – who announced in September that he would step down as head of Alibaba next year – has previously indicated he preferred to keep the Chinese state at arm’s length.
“My philosophy is to be in love with the government, but never marry them,” he said at the World Economic Forum in Davos in 2007.