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Business trends

Google will struggle to win in today's China, former executive says

Lee Kai-Fu warns Silicon Valley not to underestimate evolution from 'copycat' past

Google is reportedly developing an app to bring its search engine feature back to China.   © Reuters

NEW YORK -- Google will run into difficulties if it tries to break back into the Chinese market, the former president of Google China said at the Council on Foreign Relations here Friday.

According to Taiwan-born Lee Kai-Fu, who once led the tech company's China operations and now runs Sinovation Ventures, an AI-focused investment firm, Chinese tech companies have evolved beyond their "copycat" roots to create standalone products well-suited to the Chinese market in a way that American tech companies have yet to offer.

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