The source said that mainland officials have asked the media to strictly adhere to the official line of reporting on Alibaba founder Jack Ma, and not to comment on or quote foreign media reports without permission.
According to the Financial Times, two sources said the media were required to “correctly quote” the official version of the anti-monopoly investigation and not to change or add other comments without permission. The document states that “if a company’s statement opposes the official position, it cannot be published or reproduced. Foreign media reports cannot be quoted.
Ma’s last public appearance was at the Bund Financial Forum in Shanghai in late October last year, when he criticized the mainland’s financial regulation policy as being too much regulation and not enough supervision. In the same forum, Vice President Wang Qishan stressed the importance of financial regulation.
Shortly after Ma’s speech, the initial public offering (IPO) of Alibaba’s fintech arm Ant Group was suspended in early November last year. Late last year, the People’s Bank of China, the Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission, the Securities Regulatory Commission, the Foreign Exchange Bureau and other financial authorities jointly interviewed Ant Group again.
Ma has not only not appeared in public for more than two months, but also has not updated his social media messages, and several foreign media have said that his “whereabouts are unknown” and he is under great pressure, and the mainland public’s view of Ma has also turned negative under the guidance of official opinion.