China’s Alibaba Group will invest 100 billion yuan ($15.5 billion) by 2025 to support its “common prosperity” becoming the latest example of a giant pledging to support the initiative led by Chinese President Xi Jinping.
The Beijing government is encouraging companies to share their wealth as part of efforts to reduce inequality in the world’s second-largest economy, and among other companies that have announced similar moves are Tencent, which pledged about 100 billion yuan, and Geely Automobile.
Alibaba’s funding will be channeled into subsidies for small and medium-sized businesses as well as its investment in improving insurance protection for workers in the temporary job economy such as postmen and passenger drivers, and the company will allocate about 20 billion yuan to the Common Prosperity Development Fund.
The e-commerce giant and its tech rivals have seen a sweeping regulatory crackdown on issues ranging from its monopolistic behavior to consumer rights. Alibaba was reportedly fined $2.75 billion in April for antitrust violations. Read more [China Fines Alibaba $2.75B For Violating Antitrust Laws].
The technology sector has attracted many criticisms about the treatment of delivery workers and passenger transport drivers, who do not have the basic and health insurances enjoyed by workers in other sectors.
Alibaba’s food delivery platform Ele.me and supermarket company Freshippo were invited to a meeting with government regulators last month to improve the safety and labor rights of their delivery workers.