The number of blockchain developers in China is still small compared to other countries, but it is growing. According to a Forkast.News study of LinkedIn profiles in China, there were 5,290 blockchain developers in the country in 2019, up from 3,780 in 2018.
The low number of blockchain developers in China, particularly compared to India, is a product of the relatively immature software development sector. According to a developer survey in 2017 by Alibaba, the industry as a whole is relatively inexperienced and young. A majority (56.7%) of developers in China have only 0-3 years of work experience. This suggests that China’s developer community is less experienced than international peers (42% have 3-10 years of experience). They are also heavily focused on fields such as web development, computer vision, neuro-learning protocols and voice recognition.
In addition, this does not cover developers who work primarily in another sector but may occasionally develop for blockchain applications.
India has a disproportionately high number of developers given its mature and extensive software outsourcing market (largely thanks to the lack of a language barrier with the West).
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For China’s blockchain market to mature, it needs to build up a professional corps of blockchain developers. It’s not for a lack of developers — China has plenty — but they are employed by internet giants and other large enterprises. But not enough startups and young talent are as gung ho about blockchain as they are about hotter categories such as such as AI, media or the sharing economy. Nonetheless, China’s blockchain industry has its own market as an advantage: With aggressive government support and a population of 1.4 billion, the demand is there. The supply of labor needs to come next.