China or 'mainland' China?

I’d just seen mainland put before China in another thread. Seems odd because I don’t know of populated islands that belong to China, and I think it’s incorrect, but maybe it’s ‘a thing’. Some old way…?

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It’s often used to refer to the PRC proper, excluding Hong Kong and Macau.


OK. Maybe I don’t get around very much; I don’t recall hearing that phrase. It’s common to hear Hawaiian folk referring to continental US as ‘the Mainland’, but no other state does that. You need to be in Hawaii to say it that way. Could you reasonably assume the speaker is from HK?

Even the MOJ refers to china as the mainland… confusing right?

Yes it is! had not heard it before. Guess it’s just a Taiwan peculiarity

…and as the international speed of government is s l o o w , that goof could remain there for years, eh?


Taiwan is a separate country.


According to the AP Stylebook:

“When used alone, China refers to the nation that includes the mainland, Hong Kong, and Macau. Use China in mainland datelines; Hong Kong and Macau stand alone in datelines.

Use People’s Republic of China , Communist China , and mainland China only in direct quotations or when needed to distinguish the mainland and its government from Taiwan. Use Red China only in direct quotes.

For datelines on stories from the island of Taiwan, use the name of a community and Taiwan . In the body of a story, use Taiwan for references to the government based on the island. Use the formal name of the government, the Republic of China , when required for legal precision”



Ah; Google and the Associated Press and politics… I think I see.

Seems simpler/clearer to just say China. I’m a big fan of simple, but I’ll understand there is historical and political habit when/if I hear it. Thanks for that answer and reference.

I always say China instead of mainland China, especially when it triggers people.


Not in Taiwan

That’s because government’s hands are tied.

(referring to Rockets last post with the link) No, it is. I’m here in Taiwan and I always say China when referring to China. Not a problem.

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Indirect under ROC jurisdiction

Have you tried looking at a map? :laughing:


Hainan is not ‘island’ enough! It’s full of Russians and French expats.



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Just China. To say mainland China is a china does.have a few islands, and those residents are welcome to use mainland. But normally, china is china, why distinguish mainland vs isles if you are discussing a country?


Fraser island. I still just say Australia.

Prince edward island. I still just say Canada.

Orchid island. I still just say Taiwan.

Okinawaw. I still just say Japan.

No mainland anywhere. But if i were a resident on any of those islands, i might refer to a mainland.

As such, saying mianland china while within taiwan is touching on treason in my opinion.


legally, still ROC. There can be two independent chinas.


That only works if Beijing accepts ownership by Taipei… doesnt go both ways.

With China’s behaviour, legally means absolute squat.