Alibaba to Play Key Role in Planned Global Platform

B20, a group of private companies that advises the G20, has proposed a global e-commerce platform to bring small and medium-sized enterprises together, and Alibaba will play a key role, said B20 member Pierre Nanterme, CEO of Accenture, the professional services company.

He said a B20 working group was putting together the final draft of the proposal, which will be presented to the G20. China is the current chair of the G20.

"I am a strong believer that e-commerce and e-trade will become the key enabler of global economic growth as well as allowing SMEs to access international trade. That's why in the SME sector, we're proposing the creation of a platform called the E World Trade Platform," Nanterme said.

China's internet population has grown dramatically in the past decade to become the world's largest.

The latest statistics show that China has more than 721 million internet users, about 51 percent of the total population.

The China Center of Information Industry Development said that by June last year China had 667 million internet users, with a nationwide penetration rate of 48.8 percent.

The B20 working group believes that the creation of a global trading platform will provide more opportunities. "It's very important because at the end of the day, SMEs are the organizations creating jobs. So the more they contribute to global trade, the more they grow, and the better it is for the employment market," Nanterme said.

"It's been a great pleasure to work with Chinese colleagues, such as Jack Ma," he added. "Ma is a great leader. He is leading a fabulous company, and it's a privilege to work with him."

Diane Wang, co-chair of the B20 SME Development Taskforce and CEO of Chinese cross-border B2B e-trade company DHgate, said SMEs need more market access.

"Over the decade-long interaction with SMEs, we strongly feel that they suffer from a lack of access to global markets, information and finance," Wang said.

Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, a forum for 21 Pacific rim economies, reached a consensus with members of the G20 that cross-border e-trade should be one of the best ways of enabling SMEs to address those obstacles, she added.

"According to McKinsey, by 2025, e-commerce will account for up to 20 percent of China's GDP. For SMEs, a cross-border e-trade platform would enable them to integrate into the global value chain," she said.

Those views were echoed by Phil O'Reilly, a director of business consultancy Iron Duke Partners in New Zealand who chairs the board of the business and industry advisory committee of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

"It's enormous growth, not just e-commerce in China across borders, but in every country. It means that small and medium-sized businesses can be global from day one. It is not just trading out of China or trading into China, it is doing trade anywhere in the world," he said.

Source: China daily