Opinions, knowledge and resources from China Checkup's expert contributors

China Business License - An Introduction

by Matt Slater January 22, 2014

China Business License

All Mainland China companies should be registered and have a China business license, so there is a good chance you will have seen or received a copy of this certificate.

But what does the license represent and what information does it contain? This article explains all.

Business Registration in Mainland China

To register in Mainland China, companies are required to apply to the relevant authorities for a business license.

This application is usually made at the company’s local Administration for Industry and Commerce (AIC).

If and when the company is issued a business license, they will receive their business licence in the form of a certificate. All companies in Mainland China should be registered and have such a certificate.

What Does a China Business License Look Like?

Throughout Mainland China the appearance of the business licence certificate is fairly consistent and will clearly state the text “营业执照” (business licence) in a large font.

See the text in gold on the image below:

Many companies actually receive two versions of this certificate, one in A3 size which is the official certificate, and one in A4 size which is an official copy!

Don’t be concerned if you receive one or the other, they contain the same information.

A3 “Official” Business License

Includes the red national emblem with 5 stars

A4 “Official Copy” Business License

Without the the red national emblem.

Business Licenses with QR Codes (Updated November 2014)

As we reported earlier in the year, China business licenses are now starting to be issued with a QR codes displayed.

Here is an example of a China business license with a QR code:

What Information is Contained on a China Business License?

Unfortunately China business license certificates are only available in Chinese writing which makes it difficult to comprehend for most foreigners.

In simple terms, the license contains the key details of the company’s registration and specifies details such as their:

Requesting a Copy of a China Business License

In Mainland China it is very common for many companies such as shops and restaurants to display their business license in their premises to demonstrate to customers that they are a legitimate business.

When you are doing business with a Chinese company it is a good idea to request a copy of their China business license to ensure that they are registered.

Often a Chinese company will provide you with a copy of their license before you even ask for it.

Help! I Can’t Read the Business License

A company has provided you with a copy of their China business license but you don’t read Chinese characters and can’t make sense of it. You understand that the information on the license is critical to help you understand the business, so what to do?

China Checkup’s company verification report service gives you access to the current registration record of a Mainland China company, with complete translation and explanation in native English.

 

Verify a Chinese Certificate?

China Business License

Chinese Certificate Verification
Cost: $99 USD
Turnaround: 1 working day



 

They include all the information contained on the business license and much more. Plus, unlike a paper version of the license, you can be sure that this information will be up to date and accurate.

Alternatively, if you just want to check that the license you have been provided is legitimate, you can submit it when applying for a China Certificate Verification report and we will verify it against the company’s official records.

Help! I Can't Get a Copy of the Business License

You’ve tried asking for a copy of their business license, or feel uneasy about asking. Perhaps you are worried that the license they provided is fake or has been adjusted?

 

Verify a China Company?

Order online & get peace of mind

Mainland China Company Verification Reports
Cost: from $129 USD
Turnaround: from 1 working day



 

China Checkup have a range of company verification services that can be used to verify whether the Chinese company you are dealing with is registered in Mainland China.

Our Other Introductions




Matt Slater
Matt Slater

Author

Hi there, I'm Matt, the founder of China Checkup. Originally from the UK, I am now based in Brisbane, Australia.

Frustrated by the scarcity of concise, high-quality and timely information about Chinese companies, I setup China Checkup whilst living in Shanghai in 2013.

My team are proud that China Checkup's company verification reports have now helped thousands of clients from all corners of the world to do business in China more safely.

  

 


Related Articles

5 Ways to Check Chinese Certificates are Legitimate
5 Ways to Check Chinese Certificates are Legitimate
Has your business ever needed to check Chinese certificates for fakes or forgeries? If so, you are not alone. Regrettably, it is quite common for some unscrupulous Chinese companies to use fake or altered certificates, unfairly tarnishing the reputation of the majority of companies that do the right
Read More
China Stock Exchanges - An Overview
China Stock Exchanges - An Overview
With China stock exchanges occupying 3 places amongst the world's top 8 it is no wonder the world is noticing China's economic might. Stop to consider for a moment that the Chinese cities of Shanghai and Shenzhen are each home to stock exchanges with market caps rivalling Europe's biggest.  In addit
Read More
What are the 7 Regions of China?
What are the 7 Regions of China?
Did you know that there are 7 different regions of China which are often cited in official sources when describing China's geography, climate, economy and governance? Each of these regions are comprised of several Chinese provinces which are in close proximity and share certain geographical and cult
Read More


Also in Safer, Better Business in China

China ISO 45001 Certificate - An Introduction
China ISO 45001 Certificate - An Introduction

by Matt Slater June 14, 2019

Have you received a China ISO 45001 certificate and wondered what it is, if it is real and how to check it?

Replacing the previous standard OHSAS 18001 in 2018, this new international standard specifies the requirements for occupational health and safety.

The uptake of certification to this standard in China has been quick and many Chinese organizations are providing their clients with copies of their China ISO 45001 certificate. Learn more about it here.

Continue Reading

8 Most Useful China Map Websites
8 Most Useful China Map Websites

by Matt Slater May 21, 2019

Whether you are planning a trip to China, researching a specific location, or trying to figure out how bad the Beijing rush hour is, there are plenty of good reasons to use China map websites.

Although most international map websites cover China, these websites face various restrictions which mean they can't provide a service as in-depth as their Chinese counterparts, so it is a good idea to know your options.

In this article we introduce the 8 most useful China map websites, including both international services available in your language, and some impressive domestic websites only available in Chinese.

Continue Reading

Top 5 Cities for China to Europe Freight Trains
Top 5 Cities for China to Europe Freight Trains

by Matt Slater May 07, 2019

With the high cost of sending freight by air, and the slow speed of sea freight, Chinese exporters are increasingly utilizing China to Europe freight trains as a means of sending their produce west.

As might be expected, the majority of these trains depart from cities located far from China's coastline and her seaports, but which Chinese cities have the most rail shipments?

We took a look at the data and found that the top 5 cities for China to Europe freight trains are each provincial capitals with huge populations - with Chengdu in Sichuan province leading the way. 

Continue Reading