I'm having trouble understanding 赚走 in the following snippet:


I'm not sure if here means "to earn" (zhuàn) or "to swindle" (zuàn), which are largely different in meaning. It's also possible it's deliberately ambiguous.

The 走 appears to be a complement, along the lines of 带走 = "to take away". In this context, it refers to Apple (苹果) "earning away" or "swindling away" money from within China (在华).

Question: What does 赚走 mean in the above snippet?

  • 1
    The meaning of net profit + shipped away is well legible. And sure the company probably transfers the profit offshore. But, as someone working in finance, I'd like to say the usage is non-standard.
    – Argyll
    Commented Aug 19, 2020 at 21:13

3 Answers 3


走 here is a result complement that indicates 'away'

Apple is an American company, the article was written from the standpoint of the Chinese market. Therefore, it used the term 赚走, which means 'earn (and take away)' from China -- Apple is profiting from the Chinese market

If the article was written from the standpoint of the company itself, it would use 赚得 (earn and get) or 赚來 (earn and take in)

Also: 赚取 - to earn (and take); 赚回 - to earn (and get back);赚了- to earn (completed); 赚到 - to earn (succefully)


According to dictionaries,赚 has been found to mean swindle in some dialects or traditional Chinese. So you can find it in old books. E. g.


Nowadays, in standard Mandarin, it just means to earn. In your context, it's earning away.

  • So, 赚走 could be a double entendre. I could also detect an underlying tone of sarcasm in the passage with the 入乡随俗 as a kind of back-handed compliment? Commented Aug 17, 2020 at 5:25
  • @WayneCheah I seize a neutral tone over the passage though 赚走 sounds a bit perspective implying a bit unwillingness. 入乡随俗 here implies Apple supports 北斗导航, which is a local Chinese system. This part doesn't have anything negative, neither sarcasm nor ironic.
    – dan
    Commented Aug 17, 2020 at 6:08

I doubt the Chinese government would let Apple take their earnings out of China before paying tax, so I think 赚走 here equates to 税后利润, which a foreign owned company can take out of China.

No foreign company would invest in China without cast iron agreements on technology transfer and taking their profits out of China. Their shareholders want their dividends.

周子健于1978年11月 went to Germany. He wanted Mercedes to start up in China, but he saw many VW cars, so he went to Wolfsburg and talked to 维尔纳·施密特. The negotiations lasted 6 years before an agreement on all aspects was signed.

Have a look here.

(Not sure what came before this)
Because of this,
this company's earnings in the second quarter in China grew year on year by 1.9%,
after tax (exportable) earnings were 93.3 hundred million US dollars (approx 650 hundred million RMB)
in order to further expand their market share in China,
(that) Apple is preparing to "do as the Romans do" is not hard to understand.

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