+++++++++++Department of State
Washington, D.C. 20520
MEMORANDUM FOR ALL DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES
SUBJECT: Guidelines on Proper Terminology for Referring to China, People's Republic of China, China Mainland, and Taiwan in Official Statements and Publications
With the recognition of the People's Republic of China as the sole legitimate government of China and with the severance of diplomatic relations with the authorities on Taiwan, guidelines are necessary to insure [sic] that all U.S. Government official statements and publications concerning Taiwan conform to our policy.
Accordingly, on and after January 1, 1979, U.S. Government departments and agencies should follow the guidelines listed below in referring to China, People's Republic of China, China mainland [sic] and Taiwan in official statements and publications:
1) the term "Republic of China" is not to be used in referring to Taiwan.
2) The adjectival form is "Taiwan," not "Taiwanese." People should be referred to as "from Taiwan," "on Taiwan," "of Taiwan," etc., rather than as Taiwanese. The adjective "Chinese" should not be applied to the government or institutions on Taiwan. (The ethnic groups on Taiwan are, however, Chinese; the language spoken there is Chinese, and one of its dialects is Taiwanese. These terms should continue to be used in appropriate instances.)
3) The People's Republic of China has adopted its own method for Romanizing Chinese names ("pinyin"), which is preferable for persons from the PRC and PRC placenames [sic].
4) The Wade-Giles system, long in general use for transliterating Chinese into English, should be used for personal and place names relating to Taiwan and for other Chinese names, except where local or personal variations have been customary in places like Singapore and Hong Kong/
5) Tables of economic statistics, indexes, and similar materials, should put "China" (not "People's Republic of China") in its appropriate alphabetical position, followed by "mainland," and then "Taiwan," each indented and printed in italics or other distinctive type-face. Where statistics or other tabulated material appear in such lists, separate totals should be provided for "mainland" and "Taiwan." No grand total for "China" should be given. Where information on China is provided on a province-by-province basis, Taiwan should not be listed alphabetically among the provinces, but set off separately after the alphabetical list of provincial names. Again, statistics should be totaled separately, for "mainland" and for "Taiwan."
6) Where non-statistical information is given on both the China mainland and Taiwan (e.g., in country directories and similar publications), information on the Chinese mainland should be placed under "China" (not "People's Republic of China"), and information on Taiwan should be placed under a "Taiwan" heading. "China" should be asterisked and the reader referred to "Taiwan," which should be listed separately at the close of the list of countries. Under no circumstances should be "Taiwan" be placed of footnoted under "China" or the "People's Republic of China."
7) There are cases, of course, where "People's Republic of China" may be appropriate usage. Special guidance has been and will continue to be provided for such cases (e.g. FBIS "Green Book"). If any agencies have publications with they believe should use the term "People's Republic of China," they should make a recommendation to the Department of State, as below.
8) Any questions should be addressed to the China Working Group, Room 1210-A, Department of State
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