The Chinese are a civilization that focuses more on economy than military. As such they have many economic bonuses, but have a versatile military that can specialize well in both defense and offense.
They start out with extra villagers and their Town Centers support extra population. This gives them an edge early in the game as they can gather resources more quickly. They can also research technologies at cheaper prices, allowing them to divert the saved resources into either more villagers or extra military units. In terms of military they have many options. They have full archer and infantry technologies so foot soldiers will compose the majority of a Chinese army most of the time. Their unique unit, the Chu Ko Nu, is a crossbowman with a short range but shoots multiple arrows at a time. In groups these can provide powerful close range support. They have access to all siege weapons except the Siege Onager and the Bombard Cannon.
The disadvantages of the Chinese is that their cavalry is weaker than their infantry and archers. They are missing both the Paladin and Hussar putting both their heavy and light cavalry at a disadvantage late in the game. However they can train camels, giving them fast anti-cavalry capabilities that their infantry lack. In addition while they can attack and defend about equally well they don't stand out in either as they lack military bonuses.