President Xi Jinping has promised to open China's market wider as he opened a trade fair meant to promote the country's image as an importer, but he offered no response to USA and European complaints about technology policy and curbs on foreign business.
Speaking at an worldwide business fair in Shanghai, Xi Jinping criticised what he termed Washinton's "law of the jungle" and "winner takes all" approach to trade which, he said, leads to 'a dead end'.
Some of Xi's comments appeared to be directed toward the United States and its leader, President Donald Trump.
Mr Xi said China would seek to "step up" moves to stimulate domestic consumption of imports, lower tariffs, ease customs clearance procedures, and implement harsh punishments for intellectual property infringements, among other measures.
Ma, China's richest man with a net worth of almost US$38 billion, is an outspoken critic of the trade dispute between China and the USA that has seen both sides slap billions of dollars worth of tariffs on each other's goods.
China will not close its door to the world and will only become more and more open, President Xi said, while delivering his speech at the China International Import Expo today.
"(The) trade war is the most stupidest thing in this world", the Alibaba founder said, without mentioning Trump by name. "After more than 5,000 years of hardship, China is still here".
Ma's latest comments come just days before his e-commerce empire, which started out as a platform connecting buyers around the world with Chinese suppliers, kicks off an extravagant shopping festival on November 11 that will see tens of billions in sales transacted on its platforms.
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Presidents and prime ministers from almost 20 countries are attending the trade fair, although no leaders from Western countries are attending.
Stock markets liked the news of progress in the Sino-American conversation (as Trump probably intended, ) but then Trump economic advisor Larry Kudlow said there was "no massive movement"-and now President Xi has made a thinly veiled swipe at the Trump administration while showing no signs of giving in to American demands".
China has a massive trade deficit with nearly every country in the world, with the value of its exports far exceeding the value of its imports.
"It is important for us therefore to correct the existing trade imbalance to enable a fair share of the benefits of trade", he said.
China ranks 59th out of 62 countries on openness to foreign direct investment, according to an Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development ranking.
Both are seen as eyeing new ways into China.
China already is the No. 1 market for its Asian neighbors and is promoting its multibillion-dollar "Belt and Road" initiative to expand commerce by building ports, railways and other infrastructure across 65 countries from the South Pacific through Asia to Europe and Africa.
Mr Trump raised hopes of an agreement on trade last week after he said the sides had a "very good" phone conversation that had a heavy emphasis on trade.