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Business trends

Fight for AI talent another battle for China and US

Tencent, Alibaba and Google hunt for engineers on each other's turf

Alibaba's AI projects include City Brain, a traffic management system pictured here in Hangzhou.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- China and the U.S. are scrambling to secure one of the world's most coveted resources: talent in artificial intelligence.

About 1 million AI practitioners are needed worldwide, but only 300,000 are currently working, according to a report by a research institute affiliated with Chinese internet giant Tencent Holdings. Although 370 educational institutions perform AI-related research globally, only about 20,000 graduates are produced in the field each year.

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