At a meeting on Monday, Chinese President Xi Jinping spoke about globalization, reform, and opening up China’s economy as a number of Western executives listened attentively, hoping that he was talking about him.
During his address at the annual meeting of Chinese and foreign advisers to Beijing’s Tsinghua University school of economics and management at the Great Hall of the People, Xi praised the work done at the 19th Communist Party Congress and promised that China was about to set off down a path toward a “new era” of socialism with Chinese characteristics.
This new era will apparently involve China “pushing forward comprehensive reform with unprecedented determination and will continue to boost reform and development through opening up,” according to a Xinhua summary of Xi’s remarks.
“As a beneficiary of and contributor to economic globalization, China’s development is the opportunity for the world. China’s opening up is not a zero-sum game but win-win cooperation,” Xi said, while inviting his foreign guests to “provide more advice on China’s development, conduct more cooperation with the Chinese side, and offer a more objective and comprehensive introduction of China to the world.”
We can only imagine what Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg must have thought after hearing these remarks. In recent years, Zuckerberg has learned to speak Mandarin, promoted Xi Jinping’s book, and even jogged in the Beijing smog, all in a seemingly futile effort to get his website unblocked in China.
As if he had not already trolled Zuck enough, later in his address, Xi also included an interesting choice of Chinese idiom — “Despite a failed deal, our friendship remains” (买卖不成仁义在). Zuckerberg has met with Xi before, even reportedly asking him for baby name suggestions.
Of course, Xi, who some might now call the “king of China,” could have been referring to a number of people with that idiom, including some others in the room. Also there to hear Xi speak was Apple CEO Tim Cook, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Foxconn CEO Terry Guo, Blackstone Group CEO Stephen Schwarzman and former US treasury secretary Henry Paulson, among others.
[Images via Xinhua]
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