Stop using English, China tells TV stations

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Apr 08 2010 07:14 AM | Updated as of Apr 08 2010 03:14 PM

BEIJING – Basketball without "NBA"? The state of the economy without "GDP"? This could be the new reality for television viewers in China, as Beijing has reportedly curbed on-air use of English abbreviations.

China Central Television and Beijing Television told the state-run China Daily that they had received notification from the government to avoid using certain English abbreviations on Chinese programmes.

Broadcasters will now be asked to give the Chinese equivalent for such phrases as NBA (National Basketball Association), GDP (gross domestic product), CPI (consumer price index) and WTO (World Trade Organisation).

It was not immediately clear how many English abbreviations had been listed in the government notice, Wednesday's report said.

Calls to the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television for comment on the report went unanswered.

Last month, Huang Youyi -- a member of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, a body that advises lawmakers on political matters -- proposed tougher measures to keep English from polluting Chinese.

"If we don't pay attention and don't take measures to stop mixing Chinese with English, the Chinese language won't remain pure in a couple of years," said Huang, the editor-in-chief of the China International Publishing Group.