Chinese tech billionaire Jack Ma has finally resurfaced after a months-long disappearance, during which his companies Ant Group and Alibaba have been investigated by Chinese authorities.
Ma appeared at an online conference Wednesday to address teachers at an annual event he hosts to honor rural educators, according to Bloomberg. Ma’s whereabouts had previously been unknown since Oct. 24, when he appeared at the Bund Financial Summit in Shanghai. (RELATED: Why Aren’t We Talking More About China’s ‘Gain Of Function’ Coronavirus Research?)
— Bloomberg (@business) January 20, 2021
At that event, Ma criticized the economic policies of the Chinese Communist Party, saying China didn’t take enough economic risks. He also made comments critical of Chinese President Xi Jinping: “President Xi once said, ‘success does not have to hinge on me.’ I understand this saying as describing a kind of responsibility… However, real innovation must be trailblazing and undertaken by those with commitment.”
Ant Group’s $35 billion IPO was squashed by Chinese regulators in November and authorities launched a separate investigation into Alibaba for antitrust violations, both just weeks after Ma’s comments in Shanghai, Bloomberg reports. President Xi has reportedly grown more concerned lately about the power of China’s tech giants and the threat they could pose to financial and political stability.