Jewish Communities in Eastern China Today

China’s modern Jewish history started after Deng Xiaoping’s “Open Door” policy went into effect in the early 1980s. Since then, more foreigners started moving to China and the expat Jewish communities grew. Though Judaism is not one of the five religions officially recognized by the state, foreigners are free to practice it as well as Chinese nationals who have Jewish spouses or partners.

Now there are 13 Chabad centers across China including three in Shanghai alone, and Reform progressive communities in Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong. There’s also an Israeli Sephardic synagogue in Shanghai. It’s estimated that 10,000 Jews live in China year-round, a smattering among China’s staggering 1.4 billion people, but it swells during tourist season and throughout the year for business: An afternoon prayer service at the mega Guangzhou manufacturing fair which takes place a few times a year regularly has over 500 people.

The Chabad school in Shanghai has over 70 students. (Courtesy Chabad Shanghai)

In Beijing and Shanghai, the two main communities operate independently but there is some overlap among congregants and programming.

Below are links to some of their facilities.  Jewish Times Asia (http://www.jewishtimesasia.org/) maintains updated listings.  Please contact them or us with new or corrected listings.

Beijing

Shanghai

 

Guangzhou

Hong Kong / Kowloon / Shenzhen

Yiwa

For other synagogues in Asia, go to: http://www.jewishtimesasia.org/communities-in-asia-mainmenu-59