Conditional mean spectrum (CMS) is increasingly being accepted as a more reasonable target spectrum for selecting earthquake records than uniform hazard spectrum. Construction of CMS requires the determination of correlation coefficients of spectral accelerations. This article presents the first investigation of correlation coefficients based on earthquake records from China. First, an original methodology to verify the appropriateness of a ground‐motion prediction equation (GMPE) to determine correlation coefficients is proposed and illustrated considering seismic hazard in China. A dataset of ground motions recorded from 2007 to 2014 in China, with magnitudes ranging from 5.5 to 7.0 and epicentral distances less than 200 km, is then selected and analyzed to obtain correlation coefficients based on a newly developed GMPE. The obtained results indicate the same trends as the prediction model proposed by Baker and Jayaram (2008) based on Next Generation Attenuation‐West ground motions and GMPEs. The sensitivity of correlation coefficients to magnitude is also verified and the obtained results are provided in comprehensive tables. The results of this work provide the essential data required to develop CMS considering seismic hazard in China.