China SMS messaging regulations and restrictions

There are several carrier restrictions in place when sending messages to or from China, all of which can be viewed in the table below. You can also read more at the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology of the People’s Republic of China.

Clickatell strives to use only the best connectivity for delivery to China. To ensure optimal and high performance of our API platform and delivery of messages on a direct routing class, we may use up to three or four local providers or operator connections for delivery to Chinese operators.

It’s a good idea to work with a sales advisor to ensure compliance with all SMS regulations. Get in touch now and set up your messaging program with the help of our experts.


Restriction Description
Sender ID From address (Sender ID) will be replaced by a numeric local code.
Content of message
  • All message content templates must be provided in advance for screening by Chinese telecom authorities.
  • Any messages containing adult, religious, and political messages will be blocked.
  • Please see this list of keywords to avoid. Known filtered keywords include Falung Gong, SB, Tiananmen Square, or keywords in the category of gambling, adult content, property, education, migration, financial services, loans, beauty care, cosmetic surgery, healthcare, red timber, alcohol.
  • Any promotional message must be appended with a digital signature (based on the route being used) in order to identify the source of the message.
Message format
  • All SMS submissions must use Data Coding Scheme-8 (DCS8) for SMPP API or Unicode encoding for HTTP-based APIs (also applies for messages with full English characters).
  • Character limit is 58 characters for single SMS messages and 55 characters for long SMS messages. Subsequent messages for long SMSs have a 67-character limit. The reduced character limit is due to a 12-characters long default prepended message signature “[INFO]” that counts towards the total word count.
  • URL links are not permitted in SMS messages, and any messages containing links will be blocked.
  • Chinese networks do not support Arabic characters.
Pre-authorized content Please note that China does audit content from time to time. While not mandatory, whitelisting your content is encouraged to help ensure delivery. Whitelisted content is approved as trustworthy by the carriers, and is thus more likely to be successfully delivered. To ensure compliance, Clickatell provides a compliance registration service at no extra charge for your messages.


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