China-Japan relations

China-Japan relations

Breaking news and analysis on China-Japan relations, covering trade, investment, the legacy of war in Asia, military tensions and the impact of wider issues such as the US-China trade war and South Ch

ina Sea.

How Japan helps businesses wean themselves off China
Every Tuesday and Thursday, Inkstone Index features one important number about China to give you insight into the rising power. $2.2 billion: how much the Japanese government is spending on incentives for companies to move production lines out of China.  The coronavirus pandemic has been a catalyst for Japan to become less reliant on producing in China. In April, the government set aside more than $2 billion from its $1.1 trillion economic relief package to attract companies back to Japan or to set up in countries outside China. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had said Japan needed to reform its supply chain to produce high-value products and essential goods at home, while diversifying it
Japanese firms say no to leaving China despite Tokyo’s subsidies
The Japanese government is handing out subsidies to companies willing to move their supply chains away from China, but analysts say it will unlikely result in any large-scale exodus. As part of a record stimulus package unveiled amid the coronavirus pandemic and designed to keep the national economy afloat, the Japanese government has earmarked 220 billion yen ($2 billion) for companies that want to move production back to Japan. The diversification program also provides a further 23.5 billion yen ($219.5 million) for firms that want to shift manufacturing to Southeast Asia. But all five Japanese companies contacted by the South China Morning Post said they intended to continue to manufactur
Was Japan behind a mysterious bid to buy Macau outright?
In the 1930s, Western newspapers were in the habit of portraying Macau as a haven of pirates, scoundrels and ne’er-do-wells, gambling the days away and smoking opium by night. Maurice Dekobra, a bestselling French writer of the inter­war years, had a hit with his 1938 novel, Macao, enfer du jeu (Macao, Gambling Hell), which became an equally sensationalist film. Lacking Peking’s bohemianism, Shanghai’s modernity or Hong Kong’s dynamism, Macau sat in the South China Sea, fanning itself in the heat, a decaying relic of the diminished Portuguese empire. The economy was hurting thanks to the British Royal Navy’s suppression of piracy and smuggling. Officially, it was good news, but not for Maca
‘The Rape of Nanking’ author celebrated with California park
Tucked into a corner of northern San Jose, California, near where she lived with her family, lies a small park full of modern sculptures celebrating the life of Iris Chang, a groundbreaking Chinese-American historian and author known for The Rape of Nanking, a bestselling book that brought a brutal period in Chinese history to Western attention. Chang, the daughter of Taiwanese immigrants, published the book in 1997 to instant acclaim. She would publish one more book – this one about Chinese-American history – before taking her own life in 2004 after struggling with mental illness. Her death at age 36 shocked her family and fans around the world and gave rise to many now-discredited conspira
Chinese cartoonist detained by police for ‘insulting China’
A cartoonist in China has been detained by police for depicting Chinese people as pigs in satirical cartoons.  Police in the eastern Chinese province of Anhui said the cartoonist, surnamed Zhang, 22, was a “jingri,” a term for Chinese people who feel spiritually Japanese, and that she loved Japanese manga and worshipped Japanese culture. Zhang is accused of “insulting China” and “trampling on China’s dignity.” Millions of Chinese people were killed during the Japanese invasion of the country in the 1930s. The legacy of the conflict continues to bedevil relations between the two countries to this day. The police said Zhang had published more than 300 cartoons on social media sites in China a
China finally gets to see Spirited Away, and loves it
Animation maestro Hayao Miyazaki’s 2001 film Spirited Away had a record opening weekend for a Japanese film in China, and has taken more than twice as much as another big animated film, Pixar’s Toy Story 4, which hit cinemas the same day. As of the afternoon of June 25, Spirited Away had box office takings of more than $33 million in China, compared with less than $16 million for Toy Story 4. Spirited Away took more than $18 million from Friday to Sunday, performing even better than the first Miyazaki film to enjoy a wide cinematic release in China, My Neighbor Totoro, which opened in December last year. Miyazaki’s whimsical films have enchanted audiences worldwide for decades, but they had
Chinese war epic pulled from festival after hailing the wrong heroes
Are heroes still heroes if they belong to the wrong side? That’s the question after a war epic hailed as China’s Dunkirk was pulled abruptly from a Shanghai film festival where it was set to debut, sparking claims of censorship. The Eight Hundred, which depicts a key battle in the Second Sino-Japanese War, was set to open the 22nd Shanghai International Film Festival on June 15, but was scrubbed from the schedule just a day before. The film producer cited “technical reasons” for the removal – a euphemism often used to refer to censorship. But just five days before the movie was due to premiere, the Chinese Red Culture Research Association, a Chinese Communist Party cultural advocacy group,
At long last, China is getting an anime classic
It took 30 years, but the classic Japanese anime film My Neighbor Totoro is finally getting an official screening in Chinese cinemas. The acclaimed 1988 Studio Ghibli film about a giant furry woodland creature, who comforts two sisters through their mother’s serious illness, is widely praised for capturing the innocence and delight of childhood. It has become one of Japan’s most recognizable cultural exports. But its China release on its 30th anniversary may not just be good news for anime fans. It might also be a sign of warming Sino-Japanese ties, analysts say. Asian film specialist Kevin Ma said many foreign film releases in China were controlled by political relations. China’s massive f
Blue sky, crisp air and a reset in China-Japan ties
What happened in Beijing these past few days would have been unthinkable just a few years ago, and it’s not just the uncharacteristically blue sky and crisp air. For the first time in seven years, Japanese flags were raised outside the Great Hall of the People in the Chinese capital, as China rolled out the red carpet for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan. China’s ceremonial welcome for Abe on Friday marked a turning point in the countries’ ties, which soured in 2012 over a group of islands in the East China Sea each country claims as its own.  Anti-Japanese demonstrations broke out across China after the Japanese government nationalized these islands, known as the Senkaku in Japan and th
End of an era, as Japan to stop aid to China after 40 years
Perhaps no other country has a more complex, torturous history with China than Japan. Their first military clash took place more than 1,000 years ago. And their most recent, the Second Sino-Japanese War in 1937-45, left scars that refuse to fully heal even today. But since China opened up to the world in the 1970s, Japan has also been one of its biggest and most consistent aid donors. Beijing landmarks like the subway, the capital's international airport and the China-Japan Friendship Hospital were all built with help from Japanese financing. So, it’s truly the end of an era as Japan prepares to end 40 years of Official Development Assistance (ODA) to China. The news is expected to be confir