Why did the Chinese government criticize Alibaba 's business practices in January of 2015? Was this politically motivated in some way?

I think it has to do with an attempt to turn “made in China “ into a respectable brand. Recently, premier Li Keqiang and Minister of Science Wan Gang have been meeting manufacturers and makers in different regions in China. They expressed CCP support to entrepreneurs, esp those in the science / tech sector, to foster an “innovation with Chinese characteristics “. The idea is that China manufacturing economy should not rely on cheap knockoffs and copycats anymore. Instead, it should be taking advantage of existing manufacturing capacities to define rules - for instance technical norms. ​ As Taobao is being more and more exposed following recent IPO, it becomes the vitrin for China production. All the crappy products and counterfeit goods may “ give a poor image of China “ which is always of great concern for the CCP.

As taobao is the new visage of Chinese Internet, it should also give some face to China. ​ ​ ​

Premier Li Keqiang visiting Chaihuo maker space in Shenzhen

This text was originally published in quora.

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