Switch ‘Tibet’ with ‘Xizang’ on product translations, Chinese e-commerce platform warns its online suppliers

A Chinese e-commerce service supplier has encouraged its system merchants to substitute “Tibet” with “Xizang” – the Chinese pinyin model of the location – for merchandise translations soon after Beijing signalled its language preference for the southwest region.

The get to overhaul the translations on all product names and descriptions appeared in a see issued by the e-commerce system Weidian on Wednesday.

Weidian, China’s variation of Shopify, allows modest and midsized entrepreneurs to set up on the net stores. In accordance to its formal web-site, Weidian operates more than 90 million on-line retail shops with a trading quantity of 100 billion yuan (US$13.7 billion).

The platform warned merchants their goods would be taken out if they displayed the term “Tibet”. No deadline for the changeover was stated.


Tibetans in exile march in solidarity with Dalai Lama in India

Tibetans in exile march in solidarity with Dalai Lama in India

The announcement cited a foreign ministry English readout of an address by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi for the duration of a regional forum in Tibet on October 5, which applied “Xizang” as the formal translation for Tibet.

Internationally, the autonomous region is regarded as Tibet.

The announcement by the e-commerce system echoed previously phone calls by Chinese teachers and point out administrations to ditch the phrase “Tibet” to help give Beijing an edge in the world-wide discourse about the location.

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Meanwhile, the United Front Perform Office, a overall body responsible for dealing with non-bash people today and teams both of those inside of and exterior China, explained on its WeChat account in August that the problem is also political, not just linguistic. It reasoned that the phrase “Tibet” misleads the worldwide community, because it could be puzzled with the expression “Greater Tibet”.

According to Beijing, the expression was suggested by the Dalai Lama in the 1980s to include things like the full geographical place of the Tibet autonomous area, as nicely as parts of the provinces of Sichuan, Qinghai, Gansu and Yunnan.

The Dalai Lama fled to India in 1959 and stays the exiled non secular leader of Tibet. Beijing has blamed him for unrest in Tibet since the late 1980s, and in 2008 known as the Nobel Peace Prize laureate a “separatist” looking for independence for Tibet, a claim the Dalai Lama has denied.

Numerous Chinese netizens welcomed the shift, stating the modify from the English name could strengthen China’s cultural assurance and enable resist political stress from Western nations around the world. Other folks, however, turned down the order, contacting it an excessive evaluate.

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“Following this logic, the English title of our region can be changed to its pinyin, Zhongguo, and Xianggang to replace Hong Kong,” one particular user wrote on the microblog platform Weibo.

Critics also cited the instance the place English names were being replaced by the Romanised variation of the Chinese character in the Beijing subway final yr, calling it overcompensation.

The word “Xizang” has been employed in Chinese condition media these kinds of as the World-wide Periods and the English edition of People’s Each day considering that 2019, while CGTN and Xinhua News Company step by step adopted go well with.

To date, all the media retailers continued to use equally names. The exact is also correct of China’s overseas ministry internet site, even though it appeared to use “Xizang” significantly much less than “Tibet”.


Big tunnel completed for Yunnan-Tibet railway in southwest China

Major tunnel completed for Yunnan-Tibet railway in southwest China

An English-language Xinhua readout of remarks by a Chinese envoy to the United Nations released on Wednesday used “Xizang” instead of “Tibet”.

The English names of some Chinese metropolitan areas do not use pinyin versions of the Chinese characters, and specific ethnic minority regions are named just after the minority language pronunciation or internationally recognised names. Illustrations include Urumqi and Kashgar, each of which are towns in Xinjiang, as very well as Hohhot, which is situated in Inner Mongolia.

Candice Cearley

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