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As Forbes lists Jack Ma, founder and chairman of e-commerce giant Alibaba Group, as China's richest man, a video has re-emerged on social media of the moment Bill Gates and Warren Buffett suggest he 'donate all his money.'
English
17 May 2017 - 1:45 PM  UPDATED 18 May 2017 - 2:17 PM

According to Forbes, Jack Ma has surpassed Wanda Group Chairman, Wang Jianlin, as China's richest man, with a $30.9 billion fortune compared to Wang's $30.7 billion.

The now billionaire was last in Australia in February of this year where he made his first philanthropic contribution of $26 million to the University of Newcastle as a tribute to his connection to the city and Novocastrian Ken Morley.  Ma had stayed with the Morley family as a teenager in the 1980s.

"I am very thankful for Australia and the time I spent there in my youth," Ma said during his visit.

"The culture, the landscape and most importantly its people had a profound positive impact on my view of the world at that time.”

SBS Mandarin has been unable to confirm the date of the video that has re-surfaced on Chinese social media, but it shows Mr Ma recounting what happened when two of the world's richest men suggested he donate his fortune to charities.

In the video, which is filmed in a panel-like setting, Mr Ma says that Bill Gates and Warren Buffet tried to convince him to donate all the money years ago.

"And I asked, well, how old are you Warren? He said 80."

"I said when I'm 80, I will donate my money."

Ma's words were followed by a big round of laughter and applause from the audience. 

"I'm only 40! What is my philanthropy?"

Ma then pointed out that rich places in Beijing and Shanghai are "only a small part of China" and that there are so many "poor terrible" places in the west of China.

"As a business guy, create jobs, build more businesses, making sure people have jobs, making sure people have good life conditions, this is the key."

Ma then explained his view of philanthropy.

"Spending money is more difficult than making money, especially for philanthropy, where we have a good heart, you should also have good knowledge and capability to spend money. Otherwise you are doing good things with good heart in a terrible way."

"Training people, develop people on how to manage money, how to manage projects, how to do things better."

He further added that it was important to "work with the government to make a good policy for charity work or to build up the infrastructure."

According to Forbes, Ma's latest fortune growth comes from a surge in the value of his holdings as Alibaba shares have climbed 28 percent since the end of December, while Wang’s wealth mainly comes from real estate and the entertainment industry.