In the present study, we investigated how Chinese learners of Japanese processed kanji that are written differently in Chinese and Japanese. The participants were asked to read Japanese kanji in their native language. The result showed that kanji with a high degree of orthographical difference in Chinese and Japanese were read more slowly than those with similar written forms. The interference of the pronunciation of Japanese kanji was determined through a reading-aloud task. Following the reading-aloud task the participants were asked to rate the degree of difference between the Japanese kanji used in the reading-aloud task and their Chinese equivalents with a 7-point rating scale. The mean ratings differed significantly in the kanji with a strong orthographical difference between the two languages, but not in the kanji with minor differences in written form. These results suggest that in the mental lexicon of Chinese learners of Japanese, the forms of Chinese and Japanese and the pronunciation of Chinese and Japanese have a diff erent connection to the kanji.