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China-Japan In Potential Economic Standoff (19th September, 2012)


 

The current tensions between China and Japan over the long-standing spat surrounding ownership of five uninhabited islands in the East China Sea could spill over into a damaging economic conflict. The island group is called the Senkaku by the Japanese and known as Diaoyu by the Chinese. They are also claimed by Taiwan. Some analysts say the situation could even spiral out of control and lead to war between the two economic powerhouses. Tensions have reached boiling point after the Japanese government purchased three of the islands from their private owner earlier this month. This has sparked violent protests in over one hundred cities across China. Hundreds of Japanese factories and shops have been badly damaged.

The economic fallout over the disputed islands has already begun. It could seriously affect the US$345 billion in bilateral trade between the two countries. Many Japanese companies, such as Panasonic, Toyota and Sony, have halted production and shut their factories. Japan's tourism industry, already suffering after last year's earthquake and tsunami, has taken a hit as thousands of Chinese have cancelled trips to Japan. Chinese economists are suggesting a variety of retaliatory measures that could inflict significant damage on Japan's faltering economic recovery. Among these are economic sanctions, a boycott of Japanese goods and cutting off the supply of "rare-earth" metals required by Japan's tech industries.

WARM-UPS

1. CHINA-JAPAN DISPUTE: Walk around the class and talk to other students about this dispute. Change partners often. Share your findings with your first partner.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words from the article are most interesting and which are most boring.

 

tensions / spat / uninhabited islands / spiral out of control / powerhouses / protests / economic fallout / bilateral trade / tourism industry / retaliatory measures / boycott

Have a chat about the topics you liked. Change topics and partners frequently.

3. DISPUTES: What do you know about these disputes? Complete this table with your partner(s). Change partners and share what you wrote. Change and share again.

Dispute

What you know

What will happen 100 years from now?

China-Japan

 

 

Israel-Palestine

 

 

Falkland Islands

 

 

Kashmir

 

 

North/South Korea

 

 

South Ossetia

 

 

4. AGREEMENT: Students A strongly believe this dispute will be resolved soon; Students B strongly believe not.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. RESOLVED: What's the best way to resolve this dispute? Rank these and share your rankings with your partner. Put the best at the top. Change partners often and share your rankings.

  • U.N. decision on the islands
  • rock, paper scissors
  • shared China-Japan ownership
  • making it a neutral area
  • sell the islands to the highest bidder
  • control islands for a decade each
  • split the islands between China/Japan
  • Chinese-Japanese dialogue

6. TENSIONS: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word 'tensions'. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Read the headline. Guess if  a-h  below are true (T) or false (F).

a.

A territorial dispute could damage Chinese-Japanese trade.

T / F

b.

Some experts say the tensions could lead to war.

T / F

c.

Japan nationalized all five of the islands in early September.

T / F

d.

Over 200 Chinese cities have reported violent protests against Japan.

T / F

e.

Trade between the two countries reached $345 million in 2011.

T / F

f.

Japan's tourism industry is suffering because of the dispute.

T / F

g.

Some Chinese economists suggested hurting Japan's economy.

T / F

h.

Japan has boycotted purchasing rare-earth metals from China.

T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article.

1.

current

a.

stopped

2

spat

b.

started

3.

spiral

c.

effects

4.

purchased

d.

decline

5.

sparked

e.

tit-for-tat

6.

fallout

f.

present

7.

bilateral

g.

avoidance

8.

halted

h.

disagreement

9.

retaliatory

i.

two-way

10.

boycott

j.

bought

3. PHRASE MATCH:  (Sometimes more than one choice is possible.)

1.

long-standing

a.

out of control

2

could spill

b.

production

3.

spiral

c.

violent protests

4.

tensions have reached

d.

over

5.

This has sparked

e.

trade

6.

The economic

f.

spat

7.

$345 billion in bilateral

g.

measures

8.

halted

h.

boiling point

9.

a variety of retaliatory

i.

of Japanese goods

10.

a boycott

j.

fallout


 
 

WHILE READING / LISTENING

GAP FILL: Put the words into the gaps in the text.

The (1) ____________ tensions between China and Japan over the long-standing (2) ____________ surrounding ownership of five (3) ____________ islands in the East China Sea could (4) ____________ over into a damaging economic conflict. The island group is called the Senkaku by the Japanese and known as Diaoyu by the Chinese. They are also (5) ____________ by Taiwan. Some analysts say the situation could even (6) ____________ out of control and lead to war between the two economic powerhouses. Tensions have reached (7) ____________ point after the Japanese government purchased three of the islands from their private owner earlier this month. This has (8) ____________ violent protests in over one hundred cities across China. Hundreds of Japanese factories and shops have been badly damaged.

 

 

 

spill
sparked
spat
claimed
current
boiling
uninhabited
spiral

The economic fallout over the (9) ____________ islands has already begun. It could seriously affect the US$345 billion in (10) ____________ trade between the two countries. Many Japanese companies, such as Panasonic, Toyota and Sony, have (11) ____________ production and shut their factories. Japan's tourism industry, already suffering after last year's earthquake and tsunami, has taken a (12) ____________ as thousands of Chinese have cancelled trips to Japan. Chinese economists are suggesting a (13) ____________ of retaliatory measures that could inflict significant damage on Japan's (14) ____________ economic recovery. Among these are economic sanctions, a (15) ____________ of Japanese goods and cutting off the (16) ____________ of "rare-earth" metals required by Japan's tech industries.

 

 

hit
halted
disputed
supply
boycott
bilateral
variety
faltering

LISTENING – Listen and fill in the gaps

The current tensions between China and Japan (1) __________________ spat surrounding ownership of (2) __________________ in the East China Sea could spill over into a damaging economic conflict. The island group is called the Senkaku by the Japanese and known as Diaoyu by the Chinese. They (3) __________________ Taiwan. Some analysts say the situation could (4) __________________ control and lead to war between the two economic powerhouses. Tensions have (5) __________________ after the Japanese government purchased three of the islands from their private owner earlier this month. This has (6) __________________ in over one hundred cities across China. Hundreds of Japanese factories and shops have been badly damaged.

The (7) __________________ the disputed islands has already begun. It could seriously affect the US$345 billion (8) __________________ between the two countries. Many Japanese companies, such as Panasonic, Toyota and Sony, have (9) __________________ shut their factories. Japan's tourism industry, already suffering after last year's earthquake and tsunami, has (10) __________________ thousands of Chinese have cancelled trips to Japan. Chinese economists are suggesting a (11) __________________ measures that could inflict significant damage on Japan's faltering economic recovery. Among these are economic sanctions, a boycott of Japanese goods and cutting (12) __________________ "rare-earth" metals required by Japan's tech industries.

AFTER READING / LISTENING

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionary / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words 'bilateral' and 'trade'.

bilateral

trade

 

 

 

  • Share your findings with your partners.
  • Make questions using the words you found.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

  • Share your questions with other classmates / groups.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

5. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall how they were used in the text:

  • standing
  • spill
  • known
  • war
  • boiling
  • sparked
  • begun
  • production
  • suffering
  • trips
  • recovery
  • supply

INTERNATIONAL DISPUTES SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about international disputes in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper.

When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

 

STUDENT 1

_____________

STUDENT 2

_____________

STUDENT 3

_____________

Q.1.

 

 

 

 

Q.2.

 

 

 

 

Q.3.

 

 

 

 

Q.4.

 

 

 

 

Q.5.

 

 

 

 

  • Now return to your original partner and share and talk about what you found out. Change partners often.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

JAPAN-CHINA DISCUSSION

STUDENT A's QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

a)

What did you think when you read the headline?

b)

What springs to mind when you hear the word 'tensions'?

c)

What do you think of the standoff between China and Japan?

d)

Who owns the islands?

e)

Should the U.N. sort out the issue of ownership?

f)

How far do you think Chinese and Japanese leaders will let the situation damage their economies?

g)

What do you know about the history of this standoff?

h)

Why are the islands so important?

i)

Do you think there could be war between China and Japan?

j)

Was Japan's purchase of three of the islands a bad move?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

STUDENT B's QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

Is the economic fallout worth it for either country?

c)

Could a long dispute affect the global economy?

d)

Is China doing enough to stop Japanese factories and shops being damaged?

e)

How long do you think it would take to restore relations between the two economic powerhouses?

f)

Which country would suffer more in tit-for-tat economic measures?

g)

Will Japan and China ever live side-by-side in mutual respect?

h)

What advice would you give to the leader of each country?

i)

How do you think will this dispute / conflict be resolved?

j)

What questions would you like to ask the leaders of Japan and China?

LANGUAGE – MULTIPLE CHOICE

The current tensions between China and Japan (1) ____ the long-standing spat surrounding ownership of five uninhabited islands in the East China Sea could spill over into a damaging economic conflict. The island group is called the Senkaku by the Japanese and (2) ____ as Diaoyu by the Chinese. They are also claimed by Taiwan. Some analysts say the situation could even (3) ____ out of control and lead to war between the two economic powerhouses. Tensions have reached (4) ____ point after the Japanese government purchased three of the islands from their private owner earlier this month. This has (5) ____ violent protests in over one hundred cities across China. Hundreds of Japanese factories and shops have been (6) ____ damaged.

The economic (7) ____ over the disputed islands has already begun. It could seriously affect the US$345 billion in (8) ____ trade between the two countries. Many Japanese companies, such as Panasonic, Toyota and Sony, have (9) ____ production and shut their factories. Japan's tourism industry, already suffering after last year's earthquake and tsunami, has taken a (10) ____ as thousands of Chinese have cancelled trips to Japan. Chinese economists are suggesting a variety of retaliatory (11) ____ that could inflict significant damage on Japan's faltering economic recovery. (12) ____ these are economic sanctions, a boycott of Japanese goods and cutting off the supply of "rare-earth" metals required by Japan's tech industries.

Put the correct words from the table below in the above article.

1.

(a)

over

(b)

regard

(c)

concerns

(d)

through

2.

(a)

knew

(b)

knowing

(c)

known

(d)

knows

3.

(a)

pivot

(b)

pirouette

(c)

scurry

(d)

spiral

4.

(a)

bubbling

(b)

boiling

(c)

brewing

(d)

blistering

5.

(a)

spanked

(b)

speared

(c)

spooked

(d)

sparked

6.

(a)

mortally

(b)

deadly

(c)

badly

(d)

poorly

7.

(a)

fall back

(b)

fallout

(c)

fall short

(d)

fall apart

8.

(a)

bilateral

(b)

bionic

(c)

biopsy

(d)

bifocal

9.

(a)

halted

(b)

jaunted

(c)

planted

(d)

jointed

10.

(a)

left

(b)

while

(c)

hit

(d)

time

11.

(a)

tapes

(b)

gauges

(c)

rulers

(d)

measures

12.

(a)

Through

(b)

Among

(c)

Between

(d)

Inside

WRITING

Write about international disputes for 10 minutes. Correct your partner's paper.

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google's search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find out more about the dispute between China and Japan in the East China Sea. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. EAST CHINA SEA: Make a poster about the islands at the centre of this dispute. Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. TENSIONS: Write a magazine article about this dispute. Include imaginary interviews with someone from China and someone from Japan.

Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s).

5. LETTER: Write a letter to the head of the United Nations. Ask him three questions about this situation. Give him three ideas on how to resolve this situation. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a.

T

b.

T

c.

F

d.

F

e.

F

f.

T

g.

T

h.

F

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

current

a.

present

2

spat

b.

disagreement

3.

spiral

c.

decline

4.

purchased

d.

bought

5.

sparked

e.

started

6.

fallout

f.

effects

7.

bilateral

g.

two-way

8.

halted

h.

stopped

9.

retaliatory

i.

tit-for-tat

10.

boycott

j.

avoidance

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

long-standing

a.

spat

2

could spill

b.

over

3.

spiral

c.

out of control

4.

tensions have reached

d.

boiling point

5.

This has sparked

e.

violent protests

6.

The economic

f.

fallout

7.

$345 billion in bilateral

g.

trade

8.

halted

h.

production

9.

a variety of retaliatory

i.

measures

10.

a boycott

j.

of Japanese goods

GAP FILL:

China-Japan in potential economic standoff

The (1) current tensions between China and Japan over the long-standing (2) spat surrounding ownership of five (3) uninhabited islands in the East China Sea could (4) spill over into a damaging economic conflict. The island group is called the Senkaku by the Japanese and known as Diaoyu by the Chinese. They are also (5) claimed by Taiwan. Some analysts say the situation could even (6) spiral out of control and lead to war between the two economic powerhouses. Tensions have reached (7) boiling point after the Japanese government purchased three of the islands from their private owner earlier this month. This has (8) sparked violent protests in over one hundred cities across China. Hundreds of Japanese factories and shops have been badly damaged.

The economic fallout over the (9) disputed islands has already begun. It could seriously affect the US$345 billion in (10) bilateral trade between the two countries. Many Japanese companies, such as Panasonic, Toyota and Sony, have (11) halted production and shut their factories. Japan's tourism industry, already suffering after last year's earthquake and tsunami, has taken a (12) hit as thousands of Chinese have cancelled trips to Japan. Chinese economists are suggesting a (13) variety of retaliatory measures that could inflict significant damage on Japan's (14) faltering economic recovery. Among these are economic sanctions, a (15) boycott of Japanese goods and cutting off the (16) supply of "rare-earth" metals required by Japan's tech industries.

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - a

2 - c

3 - d

4 - b

5 - d

6 - c

7 - b

8 - a

9 -a

10 - c

11 - d

12 - b

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