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China’s tech giants pour billions into Xi’s vision of ‘common prosperity’ – CNBC

The front of Alibaba’s Wangjing office in Beijing on Dec. 24, 2020.

Costfoto | Barcroft Media | Getty Images

GUANGZHOU, China — Alibaba will invest 100 billion yuan ($15.5 billion) over the next few years into “common prosperity” initiatives, joining a chorus of technology giants pouring money into President Xi Jinping’s goal to spread wealth.

The Chinese e-commerce giant will put the money into 10 initiatives including technology innovation, economic development, high quality job creation and supporting vulnerable groups.

Last month, Xi called for the “reasonable adjustment of excessive incomes” and encouraged high income groups and businesses to “return more to society.”

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Alibaba is not the only internet giant pledging support for Xi’s call to “common prosperity.”

Last month, Tencent said it would double the money it is putting toward social initiatives to 100 billion yuan. The money will go toward areas including rural revitalization and helping grow earnings for low-income groups.

Tencent said at the time that its actions were a proactive response to the “national strategy.” The gaming and social media company said it’s clear “we should promote common prosperity in stages,” and allow some people to get rich first then help others get wealthy.

China’s high-profile technology CEOs and founders have also pledged individual sums of money.

Pinduoduo founder Colin Huang, Meituan’s Wang Xing, and Xiaomi’s Lei Jun, have collectively donated billions of dollars to social causes.