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为什么日本和韩国之间正在进行一场贸易战争?



There’s a brewing trade war brewing between two major economies that could further slow global growth and could potentially even make the price of your smartphones go up.But this is not the one you’re thinking of.This one is between Japan and Korea.Japan and South Korea are Asia’s biggest economies after China and India, and have gained worldwide acclaim for their global brands.But the relationship between the two powerhouses has long been strained, and now we''re seeing those tensions manifest themselves in a trade dispute.

如今世界上的两个主要经济体之间正在酝酿着一场贸易战,它将很可能会使全球经济增速进一步放缓,甚至可能会让智能手机的价格上涨。不过,这场贸易战并不是你所想象的那一场(中美),而是日韩之间的贸易战。日本和韩国的经济体量在亚洲仅次于中国和印度,并且他们凭借自身拥有的国际品牌在全球赢得了赞誉。但是这两个大国之间的关系长期以来一直非常紧张,如今我们可以看到这些因素正在这次的日韩贸易争端中愈演愈烈。

It all kicked off in July 2019, when Tokyo added trade restrictions on Korean companies purchasing three chemicals made in Japan.It cited Korea’s “inadequate management” of the sensitive items, essentially hinting the chemicals were being sent on to unapproved countries like North Korea and Iran.Japan produces up to 90% of the world’s supply of these chemicals, which are often used in making semiconductors and display screens.Semiconductors are critical for making major components of today’s electronic products,like your smartphone.

这一切都始于2019年7月,当时日本政府加强了对韩国企业购买三种日本制造的化学品的贸易限制。日本政府指责韩国对这些敏感化学品“管理不善”,这基本上就是在暗示,这些化学品正通过韩国被运往朝鲜和伊朗等被制裁的国家。日本生产的这些化学品目前占全世界供应量的90%,它们通常被用于制造半导体和显示屏。半导体对于当今电子产品(比如你的手机)的主要部件的制造尤为重要。



Japanese rule came to an end in 1945, following the Axis powers'' defeat in World War II.After years of negotiation, the two nations signed a treaty in 1965. It aimed to resolve all colonial-era claims “completely and finally” in exchange for $800 million worth of economic aid and loans from Japan.This amounted to more than a quarter of Korea’s GDP at the time.But many rejected the treaty as insincere or insufficient, pointing out it did not cover sensitive issues like Korea’s “comfort women.”

随着轴心国在二战中的战败,日本对朝鲜半岛的统治也在1945年落下来帷幕。经过日韩政府多年的谈判,两国于1965年签署了一项条约。条约内容为日本向韩国提供8亿美元的经济援助和贷款,自此以后,韩国将“彻底和最终”地放弃对日本殖民时代所作所为的求偿权。这8亿美元比当时韩国gdp的四分之一还多。然而还是有很多人反对这项条约,他们认为该条约缺乏诚意或者不够充分,他们指出该条约并没有涵盖朝鲜半岛的“慰安妇”等敏感问题。

The nations attempted to settle this decades later in 2015.Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe offered his “most sincere apologies and remorse,”and his government agreed to send Seoul $10 million to establish a foundation to support surviving “comfort women.” As a part of the agreement, the two head of states agreed not to criticize each other over the contentious issue on an international stage anymore.The agreement was short-lived.

日韩两国试图在2015年解决这个问题,日本首相安倍晋三表达了“最诚挚的歉意和悔恨”,日本政府同意向首尔提供1000万美元,用以建立一个支持幸存“慰安妇”的基金会。作为协议的一部分,两国元首同意今后不会在国际舞台上就这个问题互相批评。然后这项协议并没有存活多久。

Many Korean civilians and interest groups were unhappy with the outcome, saying they weren’t consulted during the negotiations. The resentment festered and eventually escalated into several mass demonstrations on the streets of Seoul.Korean consumers began to boycott Japanese goods.In 2017, Moon Jae-in became South Korea’s president, and made it clear that South Koreans would not accept the 2015 deal brokered by his predecessor.

许多韩国民众和相关利益集团都对这一结果相当不满,他们声称两国政府谈判期间并没有咨询他们的意见。韩国市民的不满情绪逐渐升级,最终衍变成为首尔街头上的几次大规模的示威活动。韩国消费者们开始抵制日货。2017年,文在寅当选韩国总统,他明确表示韩国人不会接受前任总统于2015年促成的那份协议。

Resentment was growing in Japan as well, where many felt South Korea kept “moving the goal
post” on the issue, making it impossible to settle colonial claims.At the end of 2018, the Japanese government was infuriated by a South Korean Supreme Court decision. It held Japanese companies accountable for forcing Korean workers into factories during the Second World War.

与此同时日本国内的不满情绪也在增长,许多日本人认为韩国人一直在这个问题上“得寸进尺”,使得两国之间解决殖民索赔成为一个不可能完成的任务。2018年底,韩国最高法院的一项裁决激怒了日本政府。该法院要求日本企业为二战期间强迫韩国工人进入工厂的行为负责。



As trade ties break down, prices of chips will go up in the short-term.Samsung phone prices could potentially go up too.And companies like Samsung and SK Hynix may be forced to look for alternative supply sources for its technology parts and materials imported from Japan.But there may be a silver lining in the long run.Before trade ties between both countries took a nosedive, the prices of DRAM memory chips,a common type of random access memory, were at new lows.This was due to an expected abundance in supply.That slashed profits at Samsung Electronics in the company’s worst drop in four years.But when Japan tightened its export controls, supplies of DRAM chips suddenly dropped and prices went up in turn, leading to better than expected results for Samsung and other Korean manufacturers.

随着日韩贸易关系的破裂,芯片的价格短期内将上涨。三星手机的价格也有可能随之上涨。三星和海力士SK等公司可能被迫去为那些从日本进口的技术部件和材料寻找替代的供应来源。不过从长远的角度上来看,这次事件对他们而言可能也是祸中有福。因为在两国贸易关系急降之前,由于供应量充足,DRAM内存芯片的价格创下了新低。这导致三星电子的利润大幅下降,迎来了四年内的最大跌幅。不过由于日本收紧出口管控,DRAM芯片供应量突然下降,其价格则随之上涨,导致三星以及其他韩国制造商的业绩要好过预期。

Experts say that Japan’s trade curbs on South Korea could actually backfire and hurt the Japanese economy because many Korean companies have lost trust in Japan and may choose not to do business with Japanese firms in the future.Bilateral ties took a further hit in August. The South Korean government announced its withdrawal from a highly sensitive intelligence sharing pact.So what is the intelligence agreement and why does it matter for global security?

专家指出,日本对韩国的贸易限制实际上可能会搬起石头砸自己的脚,反过来损害了日本经济。因为这让许多韩国企业失去了对日本的信任,他们在未来可能会选择不与日本企业做生意。而日韩双边关系更是在今年8月遭受了进一步打击。韩国政府宣布退出一项高度敏感的情报共享协议。所以这份情报协议又是什么呢?为什么它会对全球安全如此至关重要呢?

The General Security of Military Information Agreement, more commonly referred to as GSOMIA,
allowed the two countries to directly share information on North Korea’s nuclear and missile activities, ensuring that the two U.S. allies are aligned defensively.It’s the first intelligence-sharing agreement between the two nations since Korea’s liberation from Imperial Japan in 1945. It was signed in 2016 after five years of negotiation.

《日韩军事情报保护协定》,通常被称为GSOMIA,该协定允许两国直接分享任何与朝鲜核活动以及导弹活动相关的军事信息,确保这两个美国盟友在防御方面协调一致。这是自1945年朝鲜半岛自日帝国统治下解放以来,日韩两国签署的第一份情报共享协议。该协议经历了5年的谈判,最终于2016年签署。



Analysts say China can benefit economically if South Korea and Japan resolve their differences, but it could potentially benefit geopolitically if their relationship worsens,weakening U.S. influence in the region. The U.S., which has a sizable military presence in both countries,has always served as a bridge between the two nations.But the Trump administration has stayed relatively low key in the recent Japan-Korea dispute.Some experts suggest this could even indirectly strengthen China’s influence globally,a prospect that is raising eyebrows in Washington.

分析人士指出,如果日韩解决分歧的话,那么中国便可以在经济上受益,但是如果两国关系恶化,那么美国在该地区的影响力则会随着衰弱,中国则可能会在地缘政治方面受益。美国在日韩两国都有相当规模的驻军,它一直是两国之间的桥梁。不过在最近的日韩争端中,特朗普政府则一直保持得相对低调。一些专家认为,这甚至可能会间接增强中国在全球范围内的影响力,这一前景让华盛顿不经皱眉。