Translation and Rewriting (Japanese-English)
A Comprehensive Package
In the meantime, I wish to stress afresh the need for negotiators in Geneva to stay in contact with their respective capitals at a political level and to exploit every opportunity to reach a framework agreement by this very important deadline at the end of July.
Third, a comprehensive package is important to balancing all countries' requirements. Japan believes that the final agreement should not just provide enhanced market access for agricultural, non-agricultural, and service products but should also embody serious progress in the rules area. International trade needs more than just liberalization. It also needs rules providing for fair and transparent dispute resolution, and the WTO is the right place for this. The abuse of anti-dumping measures negates the benefits of tariff reductions, and Japan plans to continue to work with the other countries concerned for a substantive and comprehensive strengthening of the disciplines to prevent this. Likewise, while we know the Singapore issues (of trade facilitation, transparency in government procurement, investment, and competition) are important to adapting the WTO to the reality of economic globalization, we intend to continue to discuss issues flexibly within the WTO mindful of the developing countries' concerns.
Specifics aside I would emphasize how important it is that the trade negotiators in Geneva be in full touch with their capitals and take every opportunity to work for a framework agreement by the critical end-of-July target.
Structure and flow
３つめは introduces the third point: the need for a comprehensive package. This is followed by two sentences using だけでなく 'not only... (but also)', to illustrate the areas to be covered in order to be more comprehensive.
My version handles the occurrence of だけでなく quite mechanically as 'not only... (but also)' in both cases. This is one of the pitfalls of over-literal translation. In contrast, the official translation varies the expression at the second occurrence by saying 'needs more than just .... It also needs ...'. This is a much more forceful and natural way of saying the same thing.
Rules are then singled out for special treatment, with the note that the WTO is the right place to discuss this. The main point is the abuse of anti-dumping provisions. This is followed by Japan's stance on (1) stronger discipline for anti-dumping measures and (2) the approach to the Singapore issues.
Notice here the use of 連体修飾 (Japanese equivalent of the relative clause) to say something about the Singapore issues. What the relative clause says about the Singapore issues is that 'people are calling for new rules to keep the WTO abreast with global economic realities'. This describes what the Singapore isues are all about and constitutes a typical use of 連体修飾 in Japanese.
The sentence describing the Japanese stance on the Singapore issues is worth looking at in more detail.
In order to keep the WTO abreast of the economic realities of globalisation, Japan considers it important to create new rules on the Singapore issues (trade facilitation, transparency of government procurement, investment, and competition). However, we will approach discussions within the WTO in a flexible manner, keeping in mind the concerns of the developing countries.
Likewise, while we know the Singapore issues (of trade facilitation, transparency in government procurement, investment, and competition) are important to adapting the WTO to the reality of economic globalization, we intend to continue to discuss issues flexibly within the WTO mindful of the developing countries' concerns.
The Japanese consists of three parts:
- New rules are being sought for the Singapore issues in order to adapt to the economic realities of globalisation.
- Japan considers the Singapore issues to be important.
- However, with regard to the conduct of discussions within the WTO, Japan intends to discuss this flexibly while keeping in mind the concerns of the developing countries.
Both translations simplify this to two components, but in slightly different ways. My translation adopts the following split:
- Japan considers it important to create new rules on the Singapore issues in order to keep the WTO abreast of the economic realities of globalisation.
- However, we will approach discussions within the WTO in a flexible manner, keeping in mind the concerns of the developing countries.
My translation leaves out the content of the 連体修飾, which notes that there are calls for new rules. It did not seem overly important to include this bit of background information.
The official translation takes this approach:
- While we know the Singapore issues are important to adapting the WTO to the reality of economic globalization...
- We intend to continue to discuss issues flexibly within the WTO mindful of the developing countries' concerns.
- 'While we know...., we intend to...' places the emphasis on the latter part, namely the need for flexibility and consideration of the developing countries' concerns. This is implied in the Japanese original, where a strategically placed も is used to de-emphasise the first sentence (シンガポール・イシューも重要と考えていますが Even though we consider the Singapore issues important).
- The 連体修飾 construction ('new rules are being sought') is also omitted in the official translation. The fact that there are calls for action on the Singapore issues is, in fact, subtly implied in the official translation ('While we know...').
- The use of 'Likewise' to start the whole sentence helps smooth the transition from the previous sentence. The また of the original is completely ignored in my translation.
The last paragraph expresses the hope that negotiators can resolve the deadlock by the end of July 2004, introduced by いずれにせよ, literally meaning 'whichever way'. いずれにせよ is translated very effectively as 'Specifics aside' in the official translation.
The following table compares some specific items of vocabulary.
|Japanese original||Literal meaning||My translation||Official translation|
|包括的なパッケージ||'comprehensive package'||'comprehensive package'||'comprehensive package'|
|アンチダンピングの濫用||'indiscriminate use / abuse of anti-dumping'||'indiscriminate use of anti-dumping measures'||'abuse of anti-dumping measures'|
|規律強化||'strengthening of discipline'||'strengthening of discipline'||'strengthening of the disciplines'|
|グローバル化という経済実態||'economic substance/reality that is globalisation'.||'economic realities of globalisation'||'reality of economic globalization'|
|ルール作り||'creation of rules'||'create new rules'||omitted|
|貿易円滑化、政府調達透明性、投資及び競争||'facilitation of trade, transparency of government procurement, investment, and competition'||'trade facilitation, transparency of government procurement, investment, and competition'||'trade facilitation, transparency in government procurement, investment, and competition'|
|懸念も踏まえつつ||'taking into account the concerns'||'keeping in mind the concerns'||'mindful of the concerns'|
|重要な節目||'important juncture'||'important deadline'||'critical target'|
|連携し||'collaborate with'||'stay in contact'||'be in full touch'|
'Mindful of the concerns' is an economical and attractive turn of phrase for 踏まえつつ. 'Critical target' is also much more specific and compelling than 'important juncture' or even 'important deadline'.