Alibaba Group Communication Team explained the decision to a group of Indonesian chief editors that visited Alibaba headquarters on Friday, September 9, 2016.
An Alibaba spokesperson said Jack Ma felt very honored when President Jokowi offered the position on the sidelines of the G20 summit.
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"Jack sees the offer from President Jokowi as an honor," the spokesperson said.
Jack Ma currently is conducting intensive communication with the Indonesian government.
"Communication with the Indonesian government is needed to determine how to develop e-commerce for small and medium enterprises in Indonesia," the spokesperson continued.
President Joko Widodo recently offered Jack Ma a special position in his e-commerce team. Jack Ma is expected to give advice regarding the industry.
Previously, the Indonesian government and Alibaba has established a cooperation. Alibaba will market Indonesian products in a platform called Tmall (previously called Taobao Mall)
Alibaba itself sees potential in southeast Asian market, especially Indonesia. The e-commerce giant recently acquired Lazada, the largest Southeast Asian e-commerce company which also has strong presence in Indonesia.