Twenty-four isolates of Chilli veinal mottle virus (ChiVMV) from China, India, Indonesia, Taiwan and Thailand were analysed to determine their genetic relatedness. Pathogenicity of virus isolates was confirmed by induction of systemic mosaic and/or necrotic ringspot symptoms on Capsicum annuum after mechanical inoculation. The 3′ terminal sequences of the viral genomic RNA were determined. The coat protein (CP) coding regions ranged from 858 to 864 nucleotides and the 3′ untranslated regions (3′UTR) from 275 to 289 nucleotides in length. All isolates had the inverted repeat sequence GUGGNNNCCAC in the 3′UTR. The DAG motif, conserved in aphid-transmitted potyviruses, was observed in all isolates. All 24 isolates were considered as belonging to ChiVMV because of their high CP amino acid and nucleotide identity (more than 94·8 and 89·5%, respectively) with the reported ChiVMV isolates including the pepper vein banding virus (PVBV), the chilli vein-banding mottle virus (CVbMV) and the CVbMV Chiengmai isolate (CVbMV-CM1). Based on phylogenetic analysis, ChiVMV isolates including all 24 isolates tested, PVBV, CVbMV and CVbMV-CM1 can be classified into three groups. In addition, a conserved region of 204 amino acids with more than 90·2% identity was identified in the C terminal of the CP gene of ChiVMV and Pepper veinal mottle virus (PVMV), and may explain the serological cross reaction between these two viruses. The conserved region may also provide useful information for developing transgenic resistance to both ChiVMV and PVMV.