China's e-commerce tycoon, Alibaba’s founder Jack Ma has warned that a trade war could be triggered due to the global rise of protectionism.
"So today is like, the WTO is like this group of people and then the Americans or the others say well we do not benefit a lot, so we want to build another one, and China was not involved in that, and Russia is not involved in that, so can you imagine that a new agreement of trade that comes up stops the other nations from getting involved. It's a trade war. Trade is not supposed to be a war; trade is the tool to solve the wars. I think the WTO is a great idea, globalization is a great idea, but we can't because the WTO and globalization have problems, then we say forget about it, let's do something else. Let's improve it. E-WTP is a platform for everybody to join in. It's not a club for certain countries."
As an alternative way to solve the problem, Ma has been promoting an Electronic World Trade Platform which has been called the digital version of the World Trade Organization (WTO).
He said the platform is good at fighting protectionism and promoting globalization.
"So, I think this EWTP is essential in this terrible period of globalization. A lot of people are against globalization, and as I said there's nothing wrong with globalization. Globalization really can benefit everybody, enable every individual, enable every small business, and that would be a great start."
Ma also called on the G20 members to work together in solving global issues ahead of the G20 summit that will be held in Hangzhou, where his Alibaba Group is based.