Due to the continuous increase in the number of developers in China, China has become the largest market for GitHub outside the United States. The current use of Chinese services has also grown, making entering the Chinese market development the next inevitable development direction for GitHub.
However, GitHub has not revealed the actual development mode of entering the Chinese market. One way is to set up a server at a nearby location in the Chinese market like somewhere in Hong Kong or Singapore. The other way is to set up a company in China based on foreign investment and build a localized server operation whose services will be governed by the laws of the Chinese government.
As far as the current situation is concerned, although the second method can boost communication and interaction between local developers, it may face problems like law restrictions and the inability to integrate source code with open-source software in the United States.
Erica Brescia, Chief Operating Officer of GitHub said in an interview that the current idea of entering the Chinese market has been positively acknowledged by the Chinese government. In an interview with the Financial Times, she further said that Beijing was “very encouraging” of the company’s plans to expand in China.
According to Brescia, the company is planning a “phased approach” which means setting up a wholly foreign-owned subsidiary in China for the purposes of hiring staff and explore with joint venture options.
Chinese developers are concerned that they could lose access to GitHub if Washington extends its export sanctions. GitHub said it would lobby against US regulators to prevent the expansion of export controls.
As per Brescia, the Chinese government is keen for domestic developers to engage more with open-source software to hedge against the risk of being cut off from US-developed software as trade tensions continue between the countries.