On October 20, A Japanese private nonprofit group, “Genron NPO,” and the China International Publishing Group, a Chinese Communist Party-owned foreign-language publishing organization, released the results of a joint public opinion survey conducted in both countries. The number of Chinese people who answered that they have a “bad” impression of Japan increased by 13.2 percentage points over last year to 66.1 percent. Genron NPO said the reasons are the intensification of the U.S.-China confrontation and historical issues.
Previously, since 2013, impressions of Japan had been on an improving trend. The reason for the worsened impression of Japan is that more Chinese people, by an increase of 8.7 percentage points, blamed Japanese politicians’ for their inappropriate words and actions. Also, many Chinese said they could not understand why Japan follows the U.S. in foreign relations. A representative from Genron NPO had the following analysis: “The disruption of tourist visits to Japan due to the epidemic, which had been the driving force behind the improvement in impressions, is also a major factor.” He pointed out, “Communication between the government and the people has decreased, and the focus is now heavily on confrontation.”
The population of Japanese people who have a negative impression of China also increased. It grew by 1.2 percentage points to 90.9 percent. About half of them cited Chinese official ships sailing near the Senkaku Islands (known as the Diaoyu Islands in China) as the reason.
Source: Kyodo News, Chinese channel, October 20, 2021