Compiled by the UNGEGN Working Group on Romanization Systems
Version 4.0, September 2013


(in China)

The United Nations resolution III/8 in 1977 recognized the Scheme for a Chinese Phonetic Alphabet (Pinyin) as China’s official Roman alphabet scheme and recommended the alphabet as the international system for the romanization of Chinese geographical names. In China Mongolian geographical names are transcribed directly from the Mongolian script into Pinyin. The scheme was published in Toponymic Guidelines for Map and Other Editors: China, 19821.

The system is used in China and in international cartographic products.

Mongolian uses a vertical script. Transcription of Mongolian names is made from their proper pronunciation based on the written form of the Mongolian language and Qahar vernacular, with Zhenglan as its representative pronunciation. Due to the complex nature of the script the romanization scheme is not reversible, e.g. the name of the city Hohhot is written ᠬᠥᠬᠡᠬᠣᠲᠠ but may be transliterated as kökeqota.


For technical reasons the characters of the Mongolian script are turned 90˚ anti-clockwise.

1 a
2 b
3 c
4 ᠲ ᠳ d
5 e
6 f
7 ᠭ ᠺ g
8 ᠬ ᠾ h
9 i
10 j
11 k
12 l
13 m
14 n
15 o
16 p
17 q
18 r
19 s
20 t
21 u
22 w
23 x
24 y
25 z
26 o [ô]
27 u [û]


  1. The long and short Mongolian vowels are not distinguished in the spelling for general use, but in recording the pronunciation of place-names, the long vowel is represented by duplication.
  2. Where two Roman equivalents are given, the second (in brackets) is used for recording the pronunciation of place-names while the first form is for general use.
  3. In the table only word-initial character variants are shown. Depending on the position in the word many variants of the characters are used as well as some ligatures. These features are not covered here.


  1. Fourth United Nations Conference on the Standardization of Geographical Names. Geneva, 24 August - 14 September 1982. Vol. II. Technical papers, pp. 121-125.