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Chinese Conversation Clips – The Differences Between Beijing and Shanghai

English translation of video content:

Chris: What’s the difference between Shanghai and Beijing, for example? What are the characteristics of Shanghai?

Becca: According to my understanding, the financial industry is probably more developed in Shanghai, compared with Beijing. Shanghai’s commerce is also more developed than Beijing, like investment banks, banks and consulting firms, they may choose Shanghai for their Chinese headquarters. As I said earlier, Beijing is more of a centre of political culture, and Shanghai is more an economic and commercial centre.

Chris: Yes, and a lot of people say Shanghai is more international than Beijing. Perhaps Beijing has retained more of the cultural characteristics of traditional China. Shanghai perhaps is a more international more commercialised place. Do you agree with this point of view?

Becca: I agree. I think that’s true, because after all Beijing’s role is to the be capital. It still retains some local Chinese ancient things, but Shanghai is a big city that has developed with a completely new face, and I think the population of people not from the city in Shanghai is no less than in Beijing.

Chris: Yes, there are a lot of people in these cities that have come from other places. We can also talk about Guangzhou, because both of us have been to Guangzhou several times. I think Guangzhou is a city adjacent to Hong Kong. It has a different culture. Some of the food is is very different to the north, and in some places it’s culture is very different to the northern cities and Shanghai. So, what do you think of the city of Guangzhou? What’s your impression of Guangzhou, after you’ve been there?

Becca: Firstly, Guangzhou’s language is actually very different to the other cities. For example, if I go to Guangzhou, I don’t understand Cantonese at all, they speak their own language system. There may even be local people who cannot understand Mandarin, a lot of older people.

Chris: Yes, some older people might not speak Mandarin.

Becca: So they speak Cantonese more.

Chris: Apart from language?

Becca: Secondly, the eating and dining habits are also very different from those in the north, so Guangdong cuisine is a completely different system. If you have a chance to visit Guangdong, you must experience Cantonese-style morning tea, afternoon tea and Cantonese cuisine and fine foods.

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  • Patrick y Laura

    great thanks