CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, Elon Musk has been offered a ‘green card’ by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, granting him permanent residency in the world’s second-largest economy, reports South China Morning Post (SCMP).
On the sidelines of a meeting between the two during the groundbreaking ceremony for Tesla’s $5 billion Gigafactory 3 project in Shanghai, Mr Musk said, "I hope to build Tesla's Shanghai factory into a global example, I really love China, I'm willing to visit here more often."
To this, China’s second-most-powerful figure, Mr Keqiang, replied, "If this is what you truly have in mind, we can give you a 'Chinese green card'."
Other noted personalities like Dutch scientist Bernard Feringa, a 2016 Nobel laureate in Chemistry, former NBA all-star Stephon Marbury, and Nobel-winning economist Robert Mundell, among others have been granted such cards.
“We hope you can get a firm foothold and expand the market. (Tesla could be a) participant in China’s opening up and a promoter of stable China-US relations,” added the Premier.
Tesla’s chief was also spotted eating at one of Beijing’s most famous hotpot restaurants, where food is flung into pots of simmering broth on the table.
After commissioning the gigafactory in Shanghai on Monday, #Tesla CEO @elonmusk was spotted eating in a famous hotpot restaurant in Beijing, a considerable upgrade from a pancake quick meal on the street during a July 2018 visit to China. pic.twitter.com/Y3oY1RVwDs— Global Times (@globaltimesnews) January 10, 2019
Last year was a difficult one for Elon Musk as he was involved in a series of controversies. IUS’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) imposed a $20 million fine on Tesla (along with another $20 million to be paid by Musk personally) for misleading investors on funding for the company.
He was also the target of social media outrage when he called a British rescue diver who was involved in a rescue operation of a soccer team trapped in the Tham Luang cave a “pedo guy.”