Amazon Web Services has installed the president of Amazon China as its executive director for the country as the US web giant looks for expansion in the local cloud market, according to Sina Finance (in Chinese).

Why it matters: The move supports Amazon’s efforts to focus more on cloud computing and cross-border e-commerce after it announced plans to shrink online retail offerings in the country earlier this year.

  • The company told TechNode in April that it would cease support for third-party merchants on Amazon China’s website from July 18.
  • Amazon faces overwhelming competition from domestic players in the country.

Details: Current Amazon Global Vice President and Amazon China President Zhang Wenyi takes on the new role of vice president of global markets for AWS and executive director for China. It remains unclear if she will remain in her other roles.

  • Zhang will take over from Rong Yongkang, who will continue to lead AWS’s new market expansion efforts.
  • She will be responsible for operation, sales, marketing, and other aspects, as well as cloud ecosystem partnerships, and relations with government and other stakeholders
  • Zhang joined Amazon in 2013 as vice president of global business and general manager of Kindle in China. In her new post, Zhang will report directly to AWS CEO Andy Jassy.

Context: Foreign cloud providers have been eager to gain a foothold in China’s fledgling cloud market, but they face strong headwinds due to local regulatory restrictions.

  • AWS entered China in 2016. Last year, it accounted for a little under 6% of the country’s s public cloud market, according to IDC.
  • As its other businesses dwindle in China’s cutthroat market, Amazon plans to focus more resources on China’s cloud market, which is currently disproportionately dominated by Alibaba Cloud.

Nicole Jao is a reporter based in Beijing. She’s passionate about emerging trends, news, and stories of human interest within the world of technology. Connect with her on Twitter or via email:

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