JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon says "he truly regrets" a quip he made this week about JPMorgan outlasting the Chinese Communist Party. At an event in Boston Tuesday, Dimon said, "I was just in Hong Kong and I made a joke that the Communist Party is celebrating its 100th year. So is JPMorgan." "I’d make you a bet we last longer," he said, adding: "I can't say that in China. They probably are listening anyway." Many large US banks have operations in China, and their ability to do business there and how successful they are is often at the whim of the Chinese government, the AP reports.
Dimon traveled to Hong Kong just last week as part of a tour of JPMorgan's operations in Asia, his first trip there since the pandemic. Dimon was given a special Hong Kong government waiver from the mandatory 21-day quarantine for arrivals from from the US. A JPMorgan spokeswoman said that the bank remains committed to doing business in China. Dimon is known for speaking his mind, with few filters in between. But he said he regretted the comments he made about China. "It’s never right to joke about or denigrate any group of people, whether it’s a country, its leadership, or any part of a society and culture," he said in a statement.
“I was trying to emphasize the strength and longevity of our company," he added in a separate statement. In his remarks Tuesday, Dimon also made an apparent reference to the harsh crackdown on dissent in Hong Kong. "Obviously, I don't have freedom of speech in China ... like I have in Hong Kong," he said, per CNN. "I don't have it in Hong Kong anymore either."
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