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China Launches Anti-Trust Probe Against E-Commerce Giant Alibaba

BEIJING (Sputnik) - An anti-monopoly investigation has been initiated against Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group, the State Administration for Market Regulation said on Thursday.

"The State Administration for Market Regulation, in accordance with the received complaint, has initiated an investigation against Alibaba company on suspicion of a monopoly," the authority said.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Ma's offer did not help to salvage the IPO since Beijing was angered by his criticism of the government's excessive regulations in the national financial industry, which he viewed as a major obstacle for the growth of new financial services and innovations. Chinese President Xi Jinping reportedly personally ordered Chinese regulators to study possible risks posed by Ant Group and suspend the IPO.

Media reported on Monday, citing sources, that the co-founder of Alibaba Group, Jack Ma, offered to hand over parts of his financial-technology giant Ant Group to the Chinese government in an attempt to save the company's initial public offering (IPO) that was suspended by the Shanghai Stock Exchange on 3 November.

Alibaba Group owns 33 percent of Ant Group, headquartered in the eastern Chinese city of Hangzhou. The company has a leading position in China in mobile payments, and it also offers credit, insurance and asset management services through mobile applications.

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