Includes official and accepted business languages spoken in this country/economy.
Last Published: 7/20/2017

Mandarin Chinese is the national language, spoken by over 70 percent of Chinese. Other than Mandarin there are six major Chinese dialects, as well as numerous local dialects. Pinyin refers to the standardized Romanization system used to represent the pronunciation of Chinese characters; it is used throughout China on signs. Simplified Chinese characters are written the same across Mainland China despite being pronounced differently in each dialect. For business purposes it is important to provide contacts with bilingual business cards, usually with Chinese characters on one side, English on the other. Titles and company names should be translated with care into Chinese to ensure a positive meaning.

Cantonese is often spoken in southern China and Hong Kong.                 

Prepared by our U.S. Embassies abroad. With its network of 108 offices across the United States and in more than 75 countries, the U.S. Commercial Service of the U.S. Department of Commerce utilizes its global presence and international marketing expertise to help U.S. companies sell their products and services worldwide. Locate the U.S. Commercial Service trade specialist in the U.S. nearest you by visiting

More Information

China Trade Development and Promotion Business Travel and Etiquette