BRUSSELS — Alibaba has brought in Interel to provide public affairs support across multiple European markets, as it steps up growth plans in the region.

In addition to Beijing, Interel will work for Alibaba in  Brussels, Paris, Berlin, London and Rome, the agency confirmed.

The move comes as Alibaba aims to position itself as a gateway to China's massive consumer market. "We’re looking forward to helping the company bring that positive message to political stakeholders in the months and years ahead," said Interel CEO Fredrik Lofthagen.

According to the company's entry on the EU Transparency Register, Aliaba is particularly focused on legislation affecting e-commerce, intellectual property, data protection and SME policy. The company's public affairs efforts are overseen by VP and head of international government relations Eric Pelletier.

Like other Chinese companies, Alibaba has attracted considerable scrutiny. In the US, the company recently considered whether a PR agency could help improve understanding of its products and services among investors, key media and brands.

"Winning this business shows that our global capacity, public affairs focus and European expertise makes us the agency of choice for multi-market public affairs work," added Lofthagen.