The China tag features articles that mention China, its people and culture and any content that relates to China and its markets.


China flag, typo states resignation of China president Xi Jinping

Typo States Resignation of China President

China flag, typo states resignation of China president Xi Jinping

Inadvertent Typo States Resignation, Xi Jinping

The China News Service recently published an article about their president, Xi Jinping, saying that in his “resignation” that China and Africa had a shared destiny in their histories.

Xi Jinping was attending a China-Africa summit in Johannesburg, South Africa when the report was released. The typo led to the suspension of four journalists: one of whom is the news agency’s bureau chief in South Africa.

The editors of China News Service, which is state-owned, had mixed up the Mandarin words for speech (zhi ci) with resignation (ci zhi).

The mistake went unnoticed even before subsequently being printed. It was corrected by several other news channels online, but the edition was already in circulation. The typo ended up in other news stories before China News Service corrected the error.

Despite the suspension of the four journalists involved, it has been reported that although it was a “serious blunder”, it will not end their careers. However, the severity of their punishment is not yet clear.

Graham O'Mahony, Blogger and Web Designer
Web Designer and Blogger
The STAR Team
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Source: The Guardian

Chinese New Year: Year of the Sheep

Chinese New Year, Year of the Sheep / Goat

Chinese New Year: Year of the Goat

Year of the Sheep or Goat

Preparations are taking place across Dublin and around the world for the Chinese New Year, which will kick off on the 19th of February. It’s one of the longest festival in the Chinese calendar running through to the 24th of February. Celebrations begin on Chinese New Year’s eve and last through to the end of the month in the Chinese calendar.

Sometimes referred to as the Spring Festival, a centuries old tradition that played a significant role in Chinese myths and legends. The holiday is ingrained in its people’s customs and is one of the most important festivals with annual celebrations taking place in chinatowns are the world.

This year marks the year of the sheep, or goat to some.

The Goat is the eighth sign of a twelve-year cycle of animals (mnemonics for the calendar system)  in the Chinese zodiac, which in turn is related to the Chinese calendar and other festival celebrations. But not only that; those born in the year of the goat are said to resemble the traits of the animal, or any other animal as part of the Chinese zodiac.

Years Of The Goat / Sheep | Chinese Calendar

Start Date End Date Heavenly Branch
13th February 1907 1st February 1908 Fire Goat
1st February 1931 5th February 1932 Earth Goat
17th February 1919 19th February 1392 Metal Goat
5th February 1943 24th January 1944 Water Goat
24th January 1955 11th February 1956 Wood Goat
9th February 1967 22th January 1968 Fire Goat
28th January 1979 15th February 1980 Earth Goat
15th February 1991 3rd February 1992 Metal Goat
1st February 2003 21th February 2004 Water Goat
19th February 2015 7th February 2016 Wood Goat
6th February 2027 25th January 2028 Fire Goat
24th January 2039 11th Feb 2040 Earth Goat
11th February 2051 31 January 2052 Metal Goat

What’s your animal in the Chinese zodiac? And do you refer to it as the year of the sheep or the year of the goat? Let us know in the comments below.

Download our Chinese New Year poster / infographic: Year of the Sheep / Goat.

The STAR Team

Bank Of Ireland: Payments to China Made Easy

Payments to China, China and Ireland flags

Payments to China in Chinese Yuan

The Bank Of Ireland is driving the way forward for businesses in Ireland that wish to transact with the world’s second largest economy in its own currency: the Chinese Yuan. For decades, international investors and companies were unable to receive or make payments in the Chinese currency, this is no longer the case as the Yuan can now be booked as a Spot or Forward contract for all Bank Of Ireland customers.

Advantages for Chinese Importers

For companies who import from China, they can now purchase goods in Yuan. Buying goods in the local currency may potentially reduce the cost of said goods, saving money and giving  greater price transparency throughout.

Advantages for Exporters to China

For companies exporting to China, they can now invoice their goods and receive payments in Yuan. Selling goods in Yuan will support international growth and will give the ability to minimise Foreign Exchange related to any Yuan costs incurred in the sales process.

Case Study: Irish to Chinese Businesses

An Irish retailer in the garden furniture business imports from a number of Chinese based manufacturing suppliers. They previously paid all invoices to China in the international trade currency i.e.  US Dollars. This limited exposure by way of Forward contracts through Bank Of Ireland Global Markets.

During the said Irish retailer’s recent trip to meet suppliers, a Chinese company indicated that they had all their production and administrative costs carried out within China and as a result, it was simpler and safer for them to receive payments in their local currency. They enquired whether future invoices could be settled in Chinese Yuan, as a means of further business co-operation. This gave the Irish retailer an opportunity to negotiate on price, resulting in savings and in some cases, represented a significant discount from previous orders thereon.

The Irish retailer spoke candidly with Bank Of Ireland Global Markets on how they could benefit from this opportunity. Since nothing changes from the Irish retailer’s point of view, in relation to their Foreign Exchange exposure; they simply purchased Chinese Yuan instead of US Dollars, albeit, through the Bank Of Ireland Global Markets.

While the Chinese Authorities have certain restrictions around the trading of Yuan, the BOI experienced Treasury Specialists will guide its customers through each step of the process.

Making payments to China: if you wish to discuss this further, please contact your Bank Of Ireland Relationship Manager. Making payments or contact BOI Dealers on +353 (0)7662 44300

Visit Bank Of Ireland for more inforamtion.

The STAR Team

Chinese New Year: Year Of The Horse

Chinese New Year 2014, year of the horse

From the 31st of January 2014 to the 15th of February 2015, it is the year of the horse according to Chinese zodiac. Chinese Astrology has fascinated many western cultures throughout the ages, as it borrows many western astrological concepts. It also incorporates aspects of Chinese philosophy such as harmony, heaven, earth and water. Chinese ideals, culture and even medicine are based on intricate ideas, which became more complex over time.
Each Chinese year is named after a common animal with this year’s being the horse. Whereas the western zodiac signs are named after star constellations and the figures each constellation represents. Depending on where the Sun was positioned in the sky at the time of one’s birth was indicative of their zodiac sign. In the Chinese zodiac, animals were assigned to dates and years that were already noted in advance.

The horse is part of a twelve-year cycle of animals. Each animal sign interacts with five elements: earth, fire, metal, water & wood. Thus, each year is not only an animal but an elemental one as well. 2014 is known to many Chinese people as the year of the Wood Horse. Last year’s sign was the Water Snake. The horse is also the seventh in this cycle.

What does all of this mean?

The horse is energetic and fiery. Its western equivalent is Gemini. Horses are freedom-loving creatures that crave to roam while their other side yearns for love and intimacy. Both qualities can trap the horse as it follows and independent course but needs companionship to ground it.

The horse is attributed to Summer. Its fixed position is south and its fixed element is fire. Therefore, if you live south of anywhere you can predict fiery situations. Things may heat up for good or for bad during the Summer months. Even if your animal sign is not a horse, the year itself will affect how your sign will interact with it.

If you believe in astrological events and its connections to human behaviour and traits, then you are probably wondering what this means for the year 2014. Well, astrologers are convinced this year will be a prosperous one if you have a business in the agriculture or lumber industries, and media companies (relating to newspapers and magazines). Seeing as the horse likes to gallop at a steady pace before it darts ahead, there will be slow moving in the first half for many businesses until a final latter half of the year of fast-moving markets. Apparently financial companies will suffer this year as are those industries related to metals and water.

Want to know if you were born in the year of the horse?

Here’s a list of dates and years to find yours…

Animal Years
Rat 1936 1948 1960 1972 1984 1996 2008
Ox 1937 1949 1961 1973 1985 1997 2009
Tiger 1938 1950 1962 1974 1986 1998 2010
Rabbit 1939 1951 1963 1975 1987 1999 2011
Dragon 1940 1952 1964 1976 1988 2000 2012
Snake 1941 1953 1965 1977 1989 2001 2013
Horse 1942 1954 1966 1978 1990 2002 2014
Goat 1943 1955 1967 1979 1991 2003 2015
Monkey 1944 1956 1968 1980 1992 2004 2016
Rooster 1945 1957 1969 1981 1993 2005 2017
Dog 1946 1958 1970 1982 1994 2006 2018
Pig 1947 1959 1971 1983 1995 2007 2019

The STAR Team

Enda Kenny’s Business Visit to China

Enda Kenny visits China for talks on further economic cooperation between the two states

Kenny starts four-day business trip to China

Business Visit to China

The Taoiseach Enda Kenny is on the last of his four-day visit to China. He is joining a trade mission involving 90 companies from Ireland. The purpose of Kenny’s current visit to China is to encourage economic and trade collaboration between Ireland and China.

Ireland has advantages which China can benefit from and China represents a vast market for Irish goods and services.

Irish companies are engaged in a continuous dynamic process of transformation centred on innovation and internationalization.

“Both Ireland and China have moved rapidly toward a knowledge-based economy built on innovation and technology and our companies have all the elements for working closer together”, stated The Irish President.

Irish culture is very popular in China and there is a great interest in Ireland among Chinese tour operators. There are also great links and possibilities in the education sector.

Mr Kenny’s visit follows the recent visit to Ireland of Xi Jinping, vice-president of China. Mr Xi said he was “deeply impressed” by his recent visit to Ireland and that he had “many pleasant memories of the warm welcome” he received in Ireland last month, reported RTÉ World News.

The STAR Team

Future Chinese President Xi Jinping visits Ireland

Future Chinese president Xi Jinping visits Ireland
Shanghai and the Pudong skyline … the country’s biggest city and a global financial hub.

Vice president Xi Jinping visits Ireland

China’s vice president Xi Jinping attended the China Trade and Investment Forum organized by Enterprise Ireland, IDA, Bord Bia and Science Foundation Ireland.

The visit of China’s vice president Xi Jinping has already delivered the signing of two agreements at Dublin Castle, promoting trade between China and Ireland. Both agreements were signed by the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton and China’s vice minister of Commerce, Gao Hucheng. Hucheng is also China’s International Trade Representative.

The first assignment scheduled a programme of events to promote collaboration between Irish and Chinese companies. Enterprise Ireland is the main partner in this programme and already has three offices in China – supporting trade between Irish and Chinese markets.

Looking to China

Enterprise Ireland reported that its clients’ exports to China rose by 10% in 2010 to €251 million; initial estimates show that 2011 delivered a further 10%.

According to the government, the other agreement consists of creating a working group to encourage investment between China and Ireland. Foreign direct investment has increased in the previous year and will continue thanks to these agreements.

Over 200 Irish companies are already exporting to China and more than half that number have offices there.

The main opportunities to enter the Chinese market lie in the following key sectors: aviation, education services, financial services, health, software, and agricultural machinery.

The more Irish and Chinese companies collaborate, the more we will be happy to help them connect and communicate effectively (with their partners in the Chinese language).

The STAR Team

Magical Beijing Tour Of Pandas

Magical Beijing Tour Of Pandas
A great event with fantastic colour and skills.

Welcome Beijing Tourism to Dublin

Last night we had great pleasure in attending the Magical Beijing Tour of Pandas. The event took place at the fabulous Convention Centre in Dublin.

The event was hosted by the Beijing Municipal Commission of Tourism Development and Tourism Ireland. The Lord Mayor of Dublin Andrew Montague attended the occasion and to greet special guests.

It was spectacular, full of amazing colour.

The story follows a group of pandas on their path to excellence, learning many martial arts skills along the way.

There were dancing Pandas and martial arts demonstrations that where world class and a beauty to behold. The show for me really highlighted Chinese culture and their understanding of balance. Fighting skills were combined with the beauty of dance, fantastic sound, music and action. In the same light as both yin and yang balance each other, the show highlighted this to perfection. The Chinese have a great understanding of colour, sound, movement and balance.

andrew montague and damian scattergood
Damian Scattergood, Managing director of STAR Translation and Andrew Montague, Lord Mayor of Dublin discuss the evening’s fantastic show.

The evenings event was put together by Beijing Art, Creation and Cultural Development Limited. The performers included Jet Lee’s schoolmates and some of the production team for the Beijing Olympics.

The children who attended were entertained by the amazing kung fu pandas, who introduced themselves with large red beach balls that had ‘Welcome Beijing’ painted across them.

Commission of tourism comittee
Members of the Beijing Municipal Committee and Lord Major of Dublin share their enjoyment of the show.

The show featured many different styles of martial arts and dance. My favorite Tai Chi was included alongside kung fu, kung fu boxing. Monkey warriors danced and fly across the stage showing amazing acrobatic skills.

chinese dancing
Shi Sha Hi, street dance crowded with people and possessing extraordinary kung fu skills.

Overall a fantastic night was had by all. It was a perfect blend of culture and business combined. Did you know there are over 100,000 Chinese people living in Ireland.

The event was perfectly run to allow both cultures to blend together and show each other the best of tourism from China and Ireland. Congratulations and thank you to all involved.

Chinese dancing, martial arts
Kung fu masters show Dublin their fighting skills and the beauty of dance combined.
Flying swords, Chinese dancing
Chinese masters perform at the CCD.

We provide Chinese translation services to clients in Ireland and the UK. With our own offices in Beijing and Shanghai, we can deliver professional translation of your documents, brochures and websites to help you communicate in the Chinese market.

The STAR Team

Newsletter September 2011

Newsletter September 2011, Translation and Localization

This month our newsletter focuses on services that can help you grow an international business. As a translation provider we are often asked for advice on a number of different areas from how to establish an overseas office to sourcing products in China. While our core focus is translation services we work with a variety of companies in many sectors.

This month we highlight two of them for you.

Doing global business…

China Sourcing

China is renowned for its manufacturing facilities. It is amazing just how many products you can purchase with a “made in china” tag. However quality and reliability is often a concern when dealing with China for the first time.

CHIRL sourcing based in Dublin run by Ray Doyle can help you develop your Chinese procurement business. CHIRL Sourcing is a leading, experienced and innovative expert in sourcing products and components for clients who want to improve their profits. With offices in both Ireland and China, they can help you source high quality product at low cost.

More on CHIRL Sourcing

International Product Management

Mary Ryan manages Product Innovator, a company that specializes in product positioning and product management strategies. Key to success in any new product release is how that product is marketed and positioned to the client in the new target market.

Product Innovator will be running their first Product Management course in London on Tuesday 13th and Wed 14th September 2011, in Palladia Central Court, London.

The intensive 2-day product management training course instructs on the product management lifecycle, and highlights processes and tasks that are essential for companies who are bringing new products or services to market, or who want to review a current product or service.

More on Product Innovator

STAR Global Health Check

If you are about to launch a new website or just focused on ensuring your documents are designed correctly for translation then our new Global Health Check program will be of interest to you. Our white paper outlines a number of key areas of consideration in English document and website design that will make your translation easier and cheaper. Choosing the right authoring system and style guide at the start of a project can save thousands in translation costs.

As part of STAR’s Global Health Check service we can offer you a full review of your English source documents and give you advice on design structure before you consider translation.

Download the whitepaper

For the Techies

Finally, a quick tool for the technical teams. If you’ve ever damaged a string during file conversion and can’t remember if it’s UTF-8 or UTF-16 and need to fix it then this great online tool can help you. Written and published by the teams in we’ve found it useful and hopefully you will too.Unicode conversion tools.

The STAR Team

Sourcing Products From China

Chirl Sourcing Solutions

Something we are often asked as a translation provider is if we can advise companies on how to source products from China.

One company we have worked with who specialize in this area is Chirl Sourcing Solutions.

Chirl Sourcing is a leading,experienced and innovative expert in sourcing products and components for clients who want to improve their profits With offices in Ireland and China, Chirl sources high quality product at low cost. Currently our strongest growth area is the mobile phone accessory and promotional industries, but also we are helping a lot of companies with new inventions from concept to a mass produced product.

Source products in China with Chirl Sourcing Solutions

An example of their work with SECA Innovations: Chirl’s client, SECA Innovations, the patent holder of the multi-hook tape measure, enlisted the help of Chirl to turn his patented invention into a reality.

Within four weeks Chirl had assisted SECA Innovations in engineering the tape hook and designing an ergonomic housing unique to the multi-hook tape. Chirl were entrusted with turning sketches and prototypes into 3D drawings and renderings, tooling the product for manufacture, manufacturing the tape, strict quality control monitoring and distribution of this unique product.

Chirl’s objective is to save your company’s valuable resources, both time and money, and we do this by providing the following services:

  • Sourcing products to your specification
  • Contract negotiations including technical translations from English to Chinese
  • Factory inspections
  • Manufacturing supervision
  • Shipment inspections
  • Logistics and delivery
  •  Value-added services

Chirl Sourcing understands the differences in culture and business practices between Ireland and China. Due to this we can extract the value and quality that China has to offer. Our negotiations are direct with the manufacturers which are certified to ISO 9001 and / or industry specific certification.

For more information, contact Ray Doyle on (01) 877 4444.

Visit Chirl Sourcing Solutions, LinkedIn

We provide English to Chinese translation services to help our customers grow their business in the Asian market.

The STAR Team

Why translate both Chinese for China and Chinese for Taiwan?

Different Chinese Translation for China and Taiwan

Due to the large area covered by Greater China (China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macao, Singapore), there is a high diversity of spoken dialects of the Chinese language. In fact, the term dialect is somewhat misleading, since they are in most cases mutually unintelligible and can thus actually be classified as different languages.

Since Beijing has for most of the time been the capital of China and city of the emperor, the dialect of Beijing has emerged as Standard Chinese, which is now the official language of China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macao, and Singapore, and a strong connecting force between all those countries.

Unlike the spoken Chinese languages, written Chinese is much less diversified. Most notable is the difference between the Simplified and Traditional Chinese characters. While the People’s Republic of China started in the 1950s, to simplify a larger part of the characters with the goal of speeding up the learning and writing process, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macao kept the Traditional characters.

Converting a text from Traditional Chinese to Simplified Chinese and vice versa can be done, more or less, with a few mouse clicks. The real issue is not the characters, but where the translation is going to be used. Even within Standard Chinese there are local variations in terminology and grammar between China and Taiwan. These differences are similar to those between American and British English, but much larger in extent.

Generally, consumers (and thus the industry) are very sensitive to such local language variations. Especially in Taiwan, considering the history it shares with China, it is impossible to use translations done anywhere else.

This is the reason why STAR has an office in Taiwan. Besides doing translations into Traditional Chinese for Taiwan we also adapt documents into Traditional Chinese for Hong Kong.

Spoken or Written?

Which Chinese dialect do you need? Check out our simple table to help you decide …

The STAR Team