Shanzhai RMB Money, Popular With Children In Shanxi


From NetEase:

! Renminbi has been pirated [山寨, “shanzhai“] too!

A water mark, golden thread and a blind spot are the major characteristics of Renminbi; have you seen a children’s edition “Renminbi” possessing all of those things? Currency with the same pattern as real Renminbi are currently popular among elementary school children, but these “bills” are issued by the “China Children’s Toy Bank.”

February 17, 2008 at around noon the Shanxi Shifan University Experimental Elementary School starts classes, and after school is let out children run en masse to a small shop to buy some items wrapped in red paper, and many come out discussing how today’s luck is really quite poor since they didn’t get anything at all today. Actually, these students are playing a game to win prizes: each play only takes 5 mao (half of one Renminbi). Inside the shop they can win toys, but if they don’t get a prize, they can get a few pieces of children’s edition Renminbi notes with the words “Issued by China Children’s Toy Bank” on the front. After going through some careful examination, these “children’s bills,” ranging from the 5 mao coins to the 100 Renminbi notes, have everything: except for their slightly smaller size and cartoon images, this money is exactly the same as real Renminbi.

“These ‘banknotes’ are quite popular with us. When playing dice or poker they can be used as counters. In a few moments you can win thousands!” Liangliang [a child interviewed] said to this reporter. It’s just like the movie “God of Gamblers” [“赌神”] playing like this feels really awesome [帅].

From what I understand, on February 1 2004, China implemented the “People’s Republic of China Bank Law,” and article 19 prohibits the use of a Chinese Renminbi on any publications or other products without the permission of the People’s Bank of China. The producer and seller of this type of “children’s banknotes” are engaged in illegal behavior. The relevant departments should unite and take action to investigate and severely prosecute the illegal printing and distribution of “children’s toy banknotes.” At the same time, schools and parents ought to educate the majority of young children to not buy these “children’s toy banknotes” and cannot allow disguised gambling to influence children’s healthy growth.

The children's edition RMB is very complete.
Children's edition 5 RMB bill.
A middle school student showing off a bunch of "money" he bought.
Different editions have many different cartoon characters.
China Childrens Bank.
囧! Ultraman!
Each bill has a cartoon story on it.

Comments from NetEase:


Small children might take these bills and spend them. Those selling these shanzhai notes must be careful!!!

Lmc.susan says:

Oh fuck!! Where do they sell them? I want to go buy some to collect!!!


Thoroughly spoofed.


Isn’t this from hell [fake money burned for the dead]?


Whoa whoa whoa, in the future when I give my little brother red pockets/envelopes [money gift] I’ll just use this kind of money and it will be taken care of. He really likes Ultraman anyway.


Shanzhai is everywhere.


The next generation of Chinese is doomed, all day only knowing how to fake things.


It’s just a type of toy is all, a way to educate kids on how to manage finances.


Not bad! I’m pretty neutral, what’s so bad about this? What can you really say about it? You’re all making such a big deal over nothing!


Yun to death…there is even a series of shanzhai Renminbi now…
In N years, let’s hope there won’t be a series of shanzhai people…


The relevant departments are on vacation again.


Not afraid that Uncle Policeman will come looking for you?


Written by Chris

Chris is an overweight, adorable pug that currently lives in Beijing, China. After getting ants in his pants about staying in Washington state, he went to China to travel, study and work. He's studied Chinese for more time than he cares to remember and translates for chinaSMACK and other organizations.

Chris currently works at the Beijing office of Shambhala, a development non-profit. His writing appears on and


Leave a Reply

One Ping

  1. Pingback:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.