TypeState media
Founded3 December 1941
HeadquartersBeijing, China
Broadcast area
OwnerPropaganda Department of the Chinese Communist Party
ParentChina Media Group
Former names
  • Radio Peking
  • Radio Beijing
Official website
www.cri.cn Edit this at Wikidata
China Radio International
Simplified Chinese中国国际
Traditional Chinese中國國際
Literal meaningChina International Radio Station
CRI headquarters in Shijingshan, Beijing

China Radio International (CRI) is the state-owned international radio broadcaster of China. It is currently headquartered in Babaoshan, Shijingshan, Beijing. It was founded on December 3, 1941, as Radio Peking. It later adopted the pinyin form Radio Beijing.

CRI states that it "endeavours to promote favourable relations between the PRC and the world" while upholding the PRC's official positions. As with other nations' external broadcasters such as Voice of America, BBC World Service and Radio Australia, CRI claims to "play a significant role in the PRC's soft power strategy" and Go Out policy, aiming to expand the influence of Chinese culture and media in a global stage. CRI attempts to employ new media and partnerships with other media outlets to compete with other international media.[1] Unlike other broadcasters, CRI's control via indirect majority ownership or financial support of radio stations in various nations is not publicly disclosed.[2][3]

CRI is presently the international radio arm of the China Media Group, under the control of the Central Publicity Department of the Chinese Communist Party, created following the first session of the 13th National People's Congress in March 2018.[4][5]

In February 2020, the United States Department of State designated CRI and other Chinese state-owned media outlets as foreign missions.[6]


Radio was first introduced in China in the 1920s and 1930s. However, few households had radio receivers. A few cities had commercial stations. Most usage of radio was for political purpose, frequently on a local area level.

The Chinese Communist Party first used radio in Yanan Shaanxi Province in March 1940 with a transmitter imported from Moscow. Xinhua New Chinese Radio (XNCR) went on the air from Yanan on December 30, 1940. XNCR transmitted to a larger geographical area after 1945, and its programs became more regular and formalized with broadcasts of news, official announcements, war bulletins, and art and literary programs.

The English service started on September 11, 1947, transmitting as XNCR from a cave in Shahe in the Taihang Mountains,[7] when China was in the midst of a civil war, to announce newly conquered areas and broadcast a Chinese political and cultural perspective to the world at large.[8][9] The station moved from the Taihang Mountains to the capital, Peking, when The People's Republic of China was formed in 1949. Its name was changed to Radio Peking on April 10, 1950, and to Radio Beijing in 1983. On January 1, 1993, the name of the station was again changed, this time to China Radio International, in order to avoid any confusion with local Beijing radio broadcasting. Its online broadcasting platform: China International Broadcasting Network (CIBN) was formally established in 2011, as a joint venture of China Radio International, Huawen Media Investment, JinZhengYuan, Youku, Oriental Times Media and Suning Holdings Group.

A 2015 investigative report by Reuters found a network of at least 33 radio stations in 14 countries that obscures CRI as its majority shareholder. A significant portion of the programming on these stations is either produced or provided by CRI, or by media firms CRI controls in the United States, Australia, and Europe.[2]

CRI has focused on forging commercial partnerships, particularly in Europe, in which its content is broadcast without attribution to CRI.[1] According to a 2023 discourse analysis by the Central European Digital Media Observatory, CRI's content steers clear of any criticism of the Chinese government.[1]


Mandarin radio channels

At the beginning of 1984, it started to broadcast home service to the Beijing area on AM and FM frequencies. The service later expanded to dozens of major cities across the PRC, providing listeners inside the PRC with timely news and reports, music, weather, English and Chinese learning skills, as well as other services.

CRI News Radio (90.5 FM)

CRI News Radio (CRI环球资讯广播) was established on 28 September 2005, which takes advantage of CRI's journalists from all around the world and reports international (and partially domestic) news, sport, entertainment and lifestyle programmes for domestic listeners in Mandarin Chinese. Its aim is to make CRI News Radio a first-class national news radio brand and its slogans are 'First News, News First', 'On-the-Spot China, Live World' etc.[10] CRI News Radio can be heard online and in Beijing on the radio on 90.5 FM; in Tianjin 90.6 FM; in Chongqing 91.7 FM; in Guangdong, Hong Kong, and Macau 107.1 FM; in Shandong 89.8 FM; in Anhui 90.1 FM.

Popular Shows

Chinese podcasts

The following programmes can be heard on the Mandarin version of the podcast from the World Radio Network:

This broadcast was originally targeted at London in the United Kingdom. In 2006, they removed the "London" reference, which was part of the introduction as "Ni hao London. Hello London"[12]

English radio channels

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CRI in English (846 AM, 1008 AM; 91.5 FM)

The CRI English channels that can be heard online are:

English Podcasts

CRI offers a list of podcast programs in English:

Holiday Broadcasts

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During major Chinese holidays (dubbed Golden Week), such as Chinese New Year, May Day, and Mid-Autumn Festival, China Radio International typically broadcasts special programmes such as:

Most of these programmes are not typical of the broadcast during the other parts of the year. The analogy is similar to Christmas music broadcasts in the United States.

Olympic Radio

In July 2006, CRI launched a new radio station called CRI Olympic Radio at 900 AM in Beijing. This special broadcast was in Mandarin, Korean, English, Russian, French, Spanish, Arabic, Japanese and German 24 hours a day. This service was terminated in late 2008 after the Beijing Olympics and now the frequency 900 AM is occupied by CRI News Radio, which covers only Beijing.[citation needed]

Pay television channels

Other than radio channels, CRI also operates these pay television channels via satellite airing:


China Radio International broadcasts in the following languages:[13]

Language Launched Website
Albanian Radio e Jashtme e Kinës
Arabic http://arabic.cri.cn
Armenian 12 April 2011[14]
Belarusian 23 September 2009[15] http://belarusian.cri.cn
Bengali http://bengali.cri.cn
Bulgarian http://bulgarian.cri.cn
Burmese 10 April 1950[16] http://myanmar.cri.cn
Croatian Kineski Radio Internacional
Cambodian 11 December 2008[17] http://cambodian.cri.cn
Czech http://czech.cri.cn
Dutch 23 September 2009[15]
English 11 September 1947[18] http://english.cri.cn Archived 2020-12-05 at the Wayback Machine
Esperanto 19 December 1964[19] http://esperanto.cri.cn
Filipino Radyo Internasyonal ng Tsina
French 5 June 1958[20] http://french.cri.cn
German 15 April 1960 Radio China International
Greek 23 September 2009[15] http://greek.cri.cn
Hausa http://hausa.cri.cn
Hebrew 23 September 2009[15] http://hebrew.cri.cn [21]
Hindi 15 March 1959 http://hindi.cri.cn
Hungarian http://hungarian.cri.cn
Indonesian Radio Internasional Tiongkok
Italian Radio Cina Internazionale
Japanese 3 December 1941[22]
Kazakh https://web.archive.org/web/20170908052146/http://kazak.cri.cn/
Korean 2 July 1950[23] http://korean.cri.cn/
Laotian 20 November 2006[24] http://laos.cri.cn
Malaysian Radio Antarabangsa China
Mongolian 1 December 1964 Хятадын олон улсын радио
Nepali 25 Jun 1975[25] http://nepal.cri.cn
Persian http://persian.cri.cn
Polish Chińskie Radio Międzynarodowe
Portuguese http://portuguese.cri.cn
Pashto http://pushtu.cri.cn
Romanian 30 August 1968 Radio China Internaţional
Russian 24 December 1954[26] Международное радио Китая
Serbian http://serbian.cri.cn
Sinhala January 1975 http://sinhalese.cri.cn
Spanish 3 September 1956[27] http://espanol.cri.cn
Swahili 6 March 2006[28] http://swahili.cri.cn
Tamil August 1963[29][30] சீன வானொலி
Thai http://thai.cri.cn
Tibetan https://web.archive.org/web/20190224113849/http://tibet.cri.cn/
Turkish http://turkish.cri.cn
Ukrainian May 2008 Міжнародне радіо Китаю
Urdu http://urdu.cri.cn
Uygur https://web.archive.org/web/20180116173813/http://uygur.cri.cn/
Vietnamese Đài phát thanh quốc tế Trung Quốc

The Tibetan, Uygur and Kazakh services are broadcast in association with local radio stations (Tibet People's Broadcasting Station and Xinjiang People's Broadcasting Station).

Joint ventures

China International Broadcasting Network

China International Broadcasting Network (CIBN, traded as Chinese: 国广东方网络(北京)有限公司, an internet TV service, was a joint venture of China Radio International with other companies. The company was owned by Global Broadcasting Media Group (Chinese: 国广环球传媒控股有限公司, a joint venture (50–50) of China Radio International and Chinese: 金正源联合投资控股有限公司, literally JinZhengYuan Union Investment Holding) for 34.0004% stake, Huawen Media Investment for 30.9996% stake, a subsidiary (Chinese: 桂林东方时代投资有限公司) of listed company Oriental Times Media (Chinese: 东方时代网络传媒股份有限公司) for 15% stake, the operator of Youku (Chinese: 合一信息技术(北京)有限公司) for 10% stake and Suning Holdings Group, the parent company of PPTV for 10% stake.[31]


CRI owns 60% of Finland-based GBTimes. GBTimes is headed by Zhao Yinong and operates radio stations across Europe that broadcast CRI-produced content.[32]

G&E Studio

G&E Studio is 60% owned by Guoguang Century Media, a Beijing firm completely owned by the CRI. James Su is president and CEO of G&E Studio, which distributes CRI content to more than a dozen radio stations inside the United States.[2]

See also



  1. ^ a b c Karásková, Ivana (September 25, 2023). "How China's Propaganda Infiltrated Radio Stations in Europe". The Diplomat. Retrieved 2023-09-28.
  2. ^ a b c Qing, Koh Gui; Shiffman, John (2 November 2015). "Beijing's covert radio network airs China-friendly news across Washington, and the world". Reuters. Archived from the original on 2 November 2015. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  3. ^ Shiffman, John; Qing, Koh Gui (2015-11-02). "FCC, Justice Department investigate covert Chinese radio network". Reuters. Archived from the original on 2020-07-06. Retrieved 2020-07-05.
  4. ^ Bandurski, David (February 12, 2021). "All This Talk of Independence". China Media Project. Archived from the original on February 15, 2021. Retrieved February 22, 2021.
  5. ^ Buckley, Chris (2018-03-21). "China Gives Communist Party More Control Over Policy and Media". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Archived from the original on 2021-11-12. Retrieved 2021-11-12.
  6. ^ Jakes, Lara; Myers, Steven Lee (2020-02-18). "U.S. Designates China's Official Media as Operatives of the Communist State". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Archived from the original on 2020-03-24. Retrieved 2020-05-29.
  7. ^ "CRI Marks China's First English Radio Show." (Archive) CRI English. November 25, 2011. Retrieved on November 16, 2013.
  8. ^ Chang, Won Ho (1989-01-01). Mass Media in China: The History and the Future. Ann Arbor: Iowa State Pr. pp. 151–152. ISBN 978-0-8138-0272-5.
  9. ^ China Radio International, History and Milestones: CRI English Service (Archive)
  10. ^ "Ѷ㲥 CRI News Radio". Archived from the original on 2012-05-23. Retrieved 2012-06-25.
  11. ^ "国际在线_读懂国际 点赞中国". Archived from the original on 2017-10-14. Retrieved 2017-10-02.
  12. ^ China Broadcast Archived 2006-10-06 at the UK Government Web Archive
  13. ^ "CRI Online". cri.cn. Archived from the original on 2015-02-13. Retrieved 2015-02-15.
  14. ^ "CRI Launches Radio Station in Armenia". english.cri.cn. Archived from the original on 22 March 2018. Retrieved 21 March 2018.
  15. ^ a b c d "CRI Online Launches New Language Services". www.chinadaily.com.cn. Archived from the original on 11 June 2016. Retrieved 21 March 2018.
  16. ^ "CRI Burmese". myanmar.cri.cn. Archived from the original on 2019-10-02. Retrieved 2020-04-16.
  17. ^ "Cambodia Friendship Radio". xinhuanet.com. Archived from the original on 25 May 2010. Retrieved 21 March 2018.
  18. ^ 中央人民广播电台研究室《解放区广播历史资料选编 1940–1949》. Beijing: 中国广播电视出版社, 1985.
  19. ^ Skizo pri Esperanto-elsendo de ĈRI Archived 2016-03-04 at the Wayback Machine, CRI.
  20. ^ Service français Archived 2015-09-15 at the Wayback Machine, CRI.
  21. ^ Yellinek, Roie (2020-02-21). "The Chinese Penetration of Israeli Media". Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies. Archived from the original on 2020-04-05. Retrieved 2020-05-25.
  22. ^ 日本語部紹介 Archived 2016-03-04 at the Wayback Machine, CRI.
  23. ^ 조선어부 소개 및 연계방식 Archived 2015-09-01 at the Wayback Machine, CRI.
  24. ^ "Chinese, Lao Presidents Launch CRI's New Radio Service in Laos". english.cri.cn. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 21 March 2018.
  25. ^ "नेपाली सेवाको संक्षिप्त परिचय - China Radio International". nepal.cri.cn. Archived from the original on 22 March 2018. Retrieved 21 March 2018.
  26. ^ Международное радио Китая Archived 2016-03-04 at the Wayback Machine, CRI.
  27. ^ Breve Historia del Departamento de Español Archived 2015-10-05 at the Wayback Machine, CRI.
  28. ^ "CRI Launches First Overseas FM Radio Station". www.china.org.cn. Archived from the original on 14 April 2018. Retrieved 21 March 2018.
  29. ^ "China Radio's Tamil station to launch FM channel in India". ndtv.com. Archived from the original on 31 December 2017. Retrieved 21 March 2018.
  30. ^ Krishnan, Ananth (30 July 2012). "At 49, China's Tamil radio station plans an expansion". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 15 December 2017. Retrieved 21 March 2018 – via www.thehindu.com.
  31. ^ 关于对国广东方网络(北京)有限公司追加投资暨关联交易事项的公告 [Announcement on capital increase in Global Broadcasting – Oriental Network (Beijing) Co,. Ltd. and related party transaction] (PDF) (in Chinese (China)). Huawen Media Investment Corporation. 25 April 2016. Archived (PDF) from the original on 9 August 2016. Retrieved 10 June 2016.
  32. ^ Qing, Koh Gui; Wardell, Jane (2015-11-02). "Chinese radio broadcaster taps front men in Finland and Australia". Reuters. Archived from the original on 2020-08-28. Retrieved 2020-10-12.


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