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China deems Musk's Taiwan comments 'inappropriate'

Billionaire’s proposition to make Taiwan ‘special administrative zone’ of China pleases no one

File photo of Tesla Founder Elon Musk. 

File photo of Tesla Founder Elon Musk.  (AP photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — After angering the Taiwanese public by “recommending” that Taiwan be made into China’s “special administrative zone,” business mogul Elon Musk on Saturday (Oct. 8) received a backlash from China as well.

In a Friday (Oct. 7) interview with the Financial Times titled, “Elon Musk: ‘Aren’t you entertained?'” the world’s richest man admitted to being a fan of China. He recommended figuring out “a special administrative zone for Taiwan that is reasonably palatable” and “more lenient than Hong Kong.”

The statement immediately sparked outrage in Taiwan, with politicians from major political parties including the Democratic Progressive Party, Kuomintang, New Power Party, and Taiwan People’s Party issuing statements denouncing Musk’s remarks. Most agreed that Musk is largely driven by the business interests and stakes he has in China and therefore holds a subjective view of cross-strait issues.

On Saturday afternoon, China’s state-run Central Television News issued an article titled, “Musk steps out of line in discussing China’s Taiwan issue, foreign ministry responds." The article reported that during a routine press conference held by the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Spokesperson Mao Ning (毛寧) responded to a question about Musk’s “inappropriate statement.”

Mao claimed in her answer that “the Taiwan issue is China’s domestic politics.” She added that China will “resolutely suppress interference by foreign forces,” a familiar statement often used in Chinese propaganda which, in this case, appears to refer to Musk.