Trad. Thème FR>ENG

Bonjour !

Aujourd’hui, je vous présente une traduction Thème (du français vers l’anglais) d’un article du journal Le Monde. Cela fait un moment que je n’en ai pas fait et je m’inquiète un peu quant à la fluidité de mes langues d’arrivées. Je commence avec l’anglais car elle est officiellement ma langue B. Mon objectif est d’avoir une combinaison ABBBC (Français-Anglais-Espagnol-Chinois-Allemand), alors il faut que je maîtrise parfaitement l’exercice du Thème. Vous allez pouvoir lire la traduction en anglais sans lire le texte initial, que vous pouvez retrouver sur le site du journal ici.

Traduction

A World built on sand

Since Antiquity, civilizations have been built on simple raw materials like clay, straw and solid stone blocks. Ours, is built on sand. It is by far the most used of all the raw materials consumed by Man, alongside with gravels and various kinds of pebbles, which are included in the production of concrete. It is consumed nearly ten times more than oil and gas on the planet. In the 20th century, we have used up to thirty-four  times more building materials compared to the past centuries; and according to the latest report of the OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development), released this Tuesday, October 23, this dependency will be even greater in the coming decades. material consumption, predominantly sand and stone, is expected to double by 2060, with the obvious consequences on the natural environments, climate and pollution (representing ten percent of the greenhouse gas emissions).

The first reason for this dependency growth is the growing population which should increase from seven to nine million. The second reason is urbanization, which should affect two-thirds of the World’s inhabitants in 2060. Of course, let’s not forget the economic growth which has a rather paradoxical snowball effect. Beyond a certain level, the more it increases, the more its appetite decreases. In the most highly-developed countries, the progress in economic growth consumes less raw materials. This is the case in Europe or in the United-States and it’s starting to be the case in China. China, where nearly half of the World’s cranes operate should stabilize its consumption of construction materials at twenty-four Gigatonnes, still one quarter of the World’s total consumption, without further increase. This is the reason why the amount of raw materials should “simply” double if the global wealth (World’s Gross Domestic Product) is expected to quadruple between 2011 and 2060.

No 100% recycling

The first limiting factor is a change in the structure of the economy. It is moving towards the tertiary sector so it needs for raw materials are lower than those of an industrial society. Even though a part of this transformation comes from the relocation of resource-intensive activities to the developing countries.

The other factor is technology, especially in terms of recycling. The estimated rise of the price of the raw materials will have a positive impact on this sector, which is more intensive in workforce than the mining sector; it should develop faster than extraction but barely enough to stop it. According to the OECD experts, the dream of having a hundred percent circular economy will remain unattainable. The demand will be so high that it will easily soak up both primary and secondary materials. Therefore, how can we imagine a society that is sober, prosperous and sustainable? An economy overcoming its appetite for sand will be the biggest challenge that capitalism will have to face in the twenty-first century.

 

Des difficultés?

Par où je commence? On se doute bien que traduire dans une langue qui n’est pas la nôtre n’est pas chose facile surtout pour ce qui est des articles de journaux. J’ai eu du mal à traduire plusieurs mots et expressions qui semblent pourtant acquis. Le langage journalistique est plein de tournures grammaticales complexes, d’expressions imagées, j’irais même jusqu’à dire qu’elles sont colorées! Ma technique est je pense, semblable à celle de tous les traducteurs: lire le texte et essayer de traduire au fur et à mesure, noter/souligner les mots que je ne connais pas ou que j’ai du mal à traduire. Quand je commence à traduire, je ne traduis pas littéralement, je traduis surtout le sens des phrases car dans la langue d’arrivée les choses ne sont pas dites ou comprises de la même façon. Le but c’est de se rapprocher au maximum du texte. Je passe beaucoup plus de temps sur un texte que je traduis à la maison, qu’un texte que je dois traduire durant un partiel, parce que la traduction c’est avant tout un travail de recherche; savoir utiliser les outils à notre disposition et trouver les expressions exactes. Durant un partiel, nous n’avons pas le droit aux dictionnaires ou autres outils ce qui est dommage car le plus souvent nous nous reposons sur nos acquis et nous n’enrichissons pas notre vocabulaire. Bref, j’ai noté tous les mots, expressions et notions que j’ai eu à chercher pendant mon travail. Les principaux outils qui ont été utilisés sont: Linguee.com, Word-reference, Google Traduction. Je sais, Google Traduction a mauvaise réputation, mais ça nous donne une idée du sens de la phrase et nous pouvons par la suite effectuer des corrections pour l’améliorer. Ce qui prouve que même si nous vivons dans un Monde qui tourne autour des machines, un logiciel de traduction ne pourra jamais être au niveau d’un Humain Traducteur/Interprète.

Mots, Expressions et Notions

matériaux de construction = construction materials, building materials

“rentre (dans le sens ici de “inclure”) dans la production de béton” = included in the production of concrete

émissions de gaz à effet de serre = greenhouse gas emissions

consommation de matériaux = material consumption

majoritairement, surtout = predominantly

pertes et profits = gains and losses / profits and losses

l’accroissement de la population = population growth/ growing population/ demographic growth/ population increase

croissance économique = economic growth/ growing economy

urbanisation = urbanization

depuis l’Antiquité = since Antiquity/ ancient times

matières premières = raw materials

ressources naturelles = natural resources 

solides blocs de pierre = solid stone blocks

consommer = use up, consume

“avec ses cousins graviers et cailloux” = alongside with gravels and pebbles 

le béton = concrete

richesse globale = global wealth/ overall wealth

le défi = challenge

les pays les plus développés = the most-highly developed countries/ most developed countries

la progression économique = economic progress/ the progress in the economic growth

l’empire du Milieu = The Middle Kingdom (ici j’ai gardé la “Chine”) 

résister à, supporter = withstand

une grue (construction) = crane

“multiplié par 4” = quadrupled

se contenter de = ici j’ai utilisé “simply” mais je continue de chercher un sens plus précis

Produit Intérieur Brut Mondial = World’s Gross Domestic Product

recyclage (des déchets) = recycling/ waste recycling/ recycling of waste

Société Industrielle = industrial society

“les activités gourmandes en ressources” = resource-intensive activities

Pays en développement = Developing Countries

“la hausse prévue” = the estimated/ expected/ forecast growth

économie circulaire = circular economy

“absorber allègrement” = easily absorb/ soak up 

 

 

 

My Best Friend, Rory GILMORE

The series has two protagonists: witty “thirty-something” mother Lorelai Gilmore and her intellectual teenage daughter Rory. Their backstory is established early in the show: Lorelai grew up in Hartford with her old moneyparents, Richard and Emily, but always felt stifled by this environment. She accidentally became pregnant at age sixteen and left home a year later to raise Rory in the close-knit town of Stars Hollow. Lorelai found work and shelter at the Independence Inn, where she eventually progressed from maid to executive manager. Lorelai and Rory develop a very close relationship, living like best friends, and Lorelai is proud of the independent life she has formed away from her parents. In the pilot episode, she is forced to go to them when Rory is admitted to Chilton Preparatory School, but she cannot afford the tuition fees. Emily and Richard agree to provide a loan, so long as the girls join them every Friday night for dinner. This sets up the show’s primary conflict, as the Gilmores are forced to face their differences and complicated past. The contrasting mother–daughter relationships of Emily–Lorelai and Lorelai–Rory become a defining theme of the show. Series creator Amy Sherman-Palladino has summarized the core of Gilmore Girls:

“I think the theme was always family and connection. I always felt like the underlying thing about Gilmore was that, if you happened to be born into a family that doesn’t really understand you, go out and make your own. That’s what Lorelai did. She went out and she made her own family. The ironic twist in her life is that then this daughter that she created this half family for, likes the family that she left. It was a cycle of crazy family.”

The series also focuses on both girls’ ambition: Rory to attend an Ivy League college and become a journalist, and Lorelai to open an inn with her best friend Sookie St. James. The romantic relationships of the protagonists are another key feature; throughout the series Lorelai has a “will-they-won’t-they” dynamic with her friend, local diner owner Luke Danes, while also harboring unresolved feelings for Rory’s father, Christopher Hayden. Rory has three boyfriends during the run of the show – local boy Dean Forrester, mysterious, well read bad boy Jess Mariano, and wealthy charismatic Logan Huntzberger. The quirky townspeople of Stars Hollow are a constant presence. Along with series-long and season-long arcs, Gilmore Girls is also episodic in nature, with mini-plots within each episode – such as a town festival, an issue at Lorelai’s inn, or a school project of Rory’s.

Source: Wikipedia

It’s a Mother-Daughter thing…

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This show aired in October 2000 and I remember watching it when I was 15-16 years old. Rory Gilmore became my best friend at first sight. If you’ve read my previous posts, you’ll probably think that I hate western series and movies, but that’s not the case. I used to love a lot of movies and shows and I will be writing about it more and more. You will then understand where I’m heading at, starting with Rory G.

Rory is a 16 year-old girl who lives with a mother and barely knows her father. She is very smart, she loves to read, she studies very hard to fulfill her dream which is studying at Harvard after finishing High School. She has a strong relationship with her mother, she trusts her, she’s her best friend.Well, when I watched the first episode, I felt I had so much in common with her. I also grew up with my mom, without a father and few friends. I was very smart, shy, I had (and still have) a strong relationship. I was literally seeing my own life on TV. Thanks to Rory, I started reading and dreaming of having my own dream to follow and work hard for. I admired her steadiness and sometimes envied her stable life. She didn’t have any major problems and she would always stay focused on her dream not matter what. When she fell in love for the first time, then broke up, I was as devastated as she was, I could feel every emotions and sometimes wished I was there with her to ease the pain. I had never felt so connected to anyone like I was with Rory Gilmore. This is the kind of show I really loved to watch from Hollywood even though they also paved the way for teenage sex (Rory did her first time with her ex-boyfriend who happened to be married at the time, but thank God she was already 18 and studying at Yale University), it was less obvious than today.

After all that’s been said, I recommend this show to anyone who’s looking for an inspiring role model especially if you have a teenage daughter. I love this show so much that I usually watch the 7 seasons every year, in September, when school is about to start. Actually, I think I will just buy the whole 7 seasons on the iTunes Store and watch it on my iPad, in English of course.

 

Did the movie Pretty Woman pave the way for the “sugar daddies” of our time ?

Before I start talking about the main subject in this new article, I would like to point out that I’m trying to raise awareness about how some ideas are being implemented in our minds or in the minds of our children. Actually I’m a young adult who will turn 27 this year and because of my experience of going through so much at a young age, I want these things to be out and I don’t want to hear anyone tell me “oh, it’s okay, you know, that’s just the way it is“, NO, it’s not. I wish I had someone back then to teach me those things. Anyway, most of the time I will use movies I’ve been watching as an example. In today’s article, I will focus on Pretty Woman, famous movie released in the early 90’s about a billionaire who end up falling in love with a prostitute.

Let’s have our first Critical Thinking…

I remember when I first saw this movie I thought to myself: why would I take this woman as an example? I mean there’s nothing to be proud about being a prostitute, these women are having a really hard time out there, and instead of helping them, raise awareness and protect them, this society is making money out of their misery… what was the true purpose of this movie?

Then… the sugar daddies started to become popular (or sugar mommies). At first you might think it’s nothing, but then you start to realize that these men and women are just disgusting pedophiles with pervy minds who just want to take advantage of young girls or young boys who are struggling to make ends meet…

Nowadays, you can find these kinds of movies anywhere which includes babysitters having sexual intercourses with the kids’dad for money or gifts and more. I used to watch a lot of them because I thought something was off, but I didn’t know what it was. Now, it’s obvious that they are trying to force this on us subconsciously so that when time comes with a Law, we won’t be able to do anything about it, just like some other Laws which are forced on us. 

What’s the impact in 2018?

Well, You know what they say: “(the love of) Money is the root of all evil” and 2018 (since 2007) has shown and continue to show us that some people are willing to do absolutely anything to become rich and famous.

Today, it’s particularly difficult to have a decent life when you have a child, bills to pay even more for us students. Some of us may have our parents to support us, but for those who are completely depending on themselves, life becomes unbearable. And why is that? Because we live in a consumption society and all the advertising is driving people crazy. They want new clothes, new shoes, new phones, computers, tablets etc, and if you’re not part of it you are stigmatized by everybody around you which oftentimes leads to depression, anxiety and let’s go as far as to add that some people even commit suicide because they can’t take it anymore… 

Following these situations, some young students started to look for new ways to get more money and live comfortably, like having a SUGAR DADDY. Let’s read a definition from the Urban dictionary: A Sugar Daddy is a boyfriend who comes with financial benefits. Sugar benefactors can help to cover tuition, bills, and frequently enjoy bestowing gifts upon their partners. Sugar Daddies exist on three levels. The Splenda Daddy is on the lowest end. He promises to shower a partner with cash and gifts, but often is limited by his income. Next is the Sugar Daddy who has a budgeted amount of sugar funds that he allocates to his sugar partner on a weekly or monthly basis. Last is a Honey Daddy who is the cream of the crop. His income has no bounds, and he can easily support multiple sugar partners. According to this definition, isn’t it a sort of “new age” prostitution? I think so and it would be either hypocritical or delusional to think otherwise. There is a major influence and we all dream at times of having our very own Edward Lewis. Moreover, this Society is pushing it with huge marketing campaigns, you can find Apps or websites promoting these kinds of relationships. A new kind of social platform where you sign in and you can choose the kind of men you want to date. You can find many profiles and have access to the man’s CV and yearly income. And trust me, it works! These platforms are very popular. I remember one day when I was randomly watching the news on TV, they did a little documentary presenting a man with his girlfriend, she was 22 and he was 55. They were very comfortable and open about sharing their story with us. He was paying for her school tuition, giving her money for her bills, plus gifts and in exchange she was available for him whenever, wherever. A second guest, and this one was a young boy about the same age, he was making around 1,000 euros. He had an allowance given to him by his parents but thought it wasn’t sufficient enough to meet his needs. 

Are people becoming more and more greedy? I think so too… It certainly because we are constantly comparing ourselves to others, we are not grateful for our lives. We want more and we want it NOW. Patience and hard work have become dull, we all choose the easy way out of our economic misery. I’m not trying to judge, I’m just saying that we should be aware of what kind of messages this Society is trying to convey through these movies. I will continue with another article entitled “How does the Entertainment Industry manage to shape our behavior using non-rational persuasion?” on the same subject.

Have you been Notebooked? I have…

Sometimes we need to be apart to understand just how much we love each other

The Notebook

Lately I felt the need to write about this movie. Actually I didn’t want to be cliché or else whatsoever but honestly I’m in love with Love itself so naturally I had to mention this movie on my Website: The Notebook. I first heard of it while watching the TvShow One Tree Hill in which I also learned the expression “to be notebooked” or “to have been notebooked”, basically someone who cries during the movie. Let’s have a little introduction from Wikipedia and then I will give you my thoughts…

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Release date: September 8, 2004

Actors: Ryan Gosling (Noah Calhoun) and Rachel McAdams (Allison Hamilton)

At a modern-day nursing home, an elderly man, Duke, reads a romantic story from his notebook to a fellow patient.In 1940, Seabrook Island, South Carolina, poor quarry worker Noah Calhoun sees 17-year-old heiress Allison “Allie” Hamilton at a carnival and they have a summer love affair. Noah takes Allie to an abandoned house that he intends to buy for them. They try to make love for the first time, but are interrupted by Noah’s friend Fin with the news that Allie’s parents have the police looking for her.When Allie and Noah return to her parents’ mansion, Allie’s mother Anne calls Noah trash and they ban her from seeing Noah. Noah walks out and Allie chases after him. They have an ensuing argument and break up. The next morning, Anne announces that the family is returning home to Charleston. Allie attempts to contact Noah, but is unable to find him, so she asks Fin to tell Noah that she loves him. When Noah gets the message he rushes to Allie’s home, only to find the house gated up and empty.Noah writes to Allie every day for a year but Anne intercepts the letters such that they never reach Allie. Noah enlists with Fin to fight in World War II, where Fin is killed in battle. Allie volunteers in a hospital for wounded soldiers, where she meets captain Lon Hammond Jr., a young lawyer who comes from old Southern money. After a few years being together, the two become engaged, to the delight of Allie’s parents.When Noah returns from the war, his father has sold their home so that Noah can buy the abandoned house. While visiting Charleston, Noah witnesses Allie and Lon kissing at a restaurant; he convinces himself that if he restores the house, Allie will come back to him. Later, while Allie is being fitted for her wedding dress, Allie is startled to see in the newspaper that Noah has completed the house to the specifications she made years before.After Allie asks permission from Lon to take a little trip before the wedding, Allie returns to Seabrook to find Noah living in the restored house. The two renew their relationship and make love. Several days later, Anne appears in the morning on Noah’s doorstep to warn Allie that Lon has followed her to Seabrook. Anne reveals that, in her youth, she had been in love with a lower-class young man and was still thinking about him; Anne then gives Allie the letters that Noah wrote to her as an admission that she had hidden them from Allie. Subsequently, Allie confesses to Lon that she had spent time with Noah, and eventually returns to her relationship with Noah.In the present narrative, it is revealed that the elderly woman is dementia-stricken Allie, Duke is actually Noah and that he had been told by Allie during the early stages of her illness to reread their journals to help her recall her past. She briefly remembers Noah but soon forgets. Her ensuing panic forces medical personnel to sedate her. Noah suffers a heart attack and is sent to the hospital while Allie is sent to a dementia ward in the same hospital. Noah visits Allie’s room in the middle of the night causing her to remember him again and proceeds to remind her of her illness, though he reassures her that they can do anything with the love they share. While sleeping, both Noah and Allie pass away and a nurse discovers them in the morning.

Well, isn’t it the most beautiful story ever? probably not but it depends on the kind of love stories you are craving for. As far as I’m concern, I’ve always wanted to meet my husband at a young age and grow old with him but Life is so unpredictable, you can’t really know what’s going to happen. My last relationship four years ago was entirely based on that idea, I don’t think I was in love with him when I come to think about it, I think I was in love with the idea of him, of us having known each other in High school and reunited years later. We lived together for a year and a half and we broke up because we weren’t meant to be together, we were too different and expected different things from life: I want to be a Conference Interpreter and travel the World and he just wanted to live a simple life in the countryside. Anyway, it might have been the most difficult time of my life, seriously, I didn’t know I could suffer that much; four years later I’m still single because I can’t imagine going through something similar, and I don’t know what I want. People don’t really show their real intentions when coming at you and I don’t want to waste my energy on someone just because I don’t want to be alone. I’ve been there and now I have more self-love and respect for myself to not fall back into these traps. This movie helped me not to give up on Love, I still believe in Love.

Allison and Noah were meant to be together, they had a strong connection from the beginning and it wasn’t just sexually or physically, it was mentally and in every possible ways. They were best friends, they played together, they were young and they weren’t trying to pretend to be anyone else in front of each other. It was them against the whole World. Even when her mother tried to marry her off to a rich and handsome military officer, Noah was still Noah seven years later ! The kind of Love you can only see on TV.

Had I ever known this kind of Love with a capital “L”? I had… When I was very young, he was my first love actually. Funny thing is, he was in love with a friend of mine for a long time but she didn’t know it and at that time I was just fooling around with him, nothing serious, I wasn’t even trying to get him to fall for me or anything, it just happened. I was 11-12 years old at the time in Ivory Coast, it was before I move to France. I used to stay at my uncle’s house to be with my cousins’ because my dad was busy so it was more convenient for me not to be alone. He was my cousins’ neighbour and his sister was a good friend of my older cousin. Long story short, it was a bit complicated, me moving to France, having a new Life, meeting new boys and people etc, like I just said before Life is unpredictable and it failed ! Actually, I don’t even know if we had anything, in fact we never discussed about anything, let’s just say we weren’t meant to be together because I feel like some things were left unsaid, there’s a big question mark but we’ve grown up, we have our lives and I’m happy if he’s doing good so leave it in the past. Anyway, that was the first time I thought I would be with someone my whole life at such a young age, yearning for an Allison and Noah kind of love…

But what is love anyway? I mean do we actually love honestly or are we driven by the ideas that Society brings about all the time through movies and ads etc? I actually try to understand Love but I can’t put myself to find the exact answer so I thought about the kind of love that I would like to encounter if I happen to fall in love again in this lifetime… I think I would like to be pursued, courted, and how is that? I might sound a bit corny but a guy who offers gifts, flowers, knows exactly what you like and put in the efforts to be accepted by you because he knows your worth. This is the kind of relationship I would like to find, not the ego-based one in which you never communicate and it’s always about who’s going to take the initiative. My idea of love is very simple: destiny can’t be forced, if you are meant to be with someone, just be patient, he will come eventually and if he doesn’t, well, being by yourself is not a shame, Life has so much to offer !

Trad. Version ANG>FR

Bonjour à vous amis Poleeglots !
Aujourd’hui, je vous propose de lire la traduction que j’ai faite d’un article du New York Times intitulé Chinese tighten belts: No avocados, cocktails or kids, paru le weekend du 25-26 Août. Je pense que vous avez tous suivi le début de la guerre commerciale entre les Etats-Unis et la Chine depuis le début de l’été. C’est une situation qui inquiète le monde entier et tout le monde veut en savoir plus, notamment sur la situation actuelle de la Chine. Je me concentre sur ces articles qui paraissent pratiquement tous les jours et j’essaye de m’entraîner à les traduire car les tests d’admissions dans les Ecoles de Traduction portent souvent sur des sujets de l’année en cours. Ensuite, cela me permet de travailler mon français qui est ma langue maternelle donc la plus importante dans mes combinaisons de langues puisque je travaillerai surtout vers celle-ci quand je serai Interprète de Conférence.
Vous pouvez accéder au texte original en cliquant sur le lien qui suit cette introduction. Je vous conseille de lire ma traduction avant de vous rapporter au texte source qui est en anglais, pour pouvoir juger la traduction et surtout la qualité du français en vous basant sur votre compréhension des idées du texte.

Accédez au Texte original en Anglais

Les chinois se serrent la ceinture et disent stop aux avocats, aux cocktails et aux enfants

Le Nouveau Monde Moderne

PAR LI YUAN

Chen Siqi ne dîne plus dehors. Li Keli a arrêté les voyages et à la place emmène son fils sur une aire de jeux publics. Wang Jiazhi a arrêté les rendez-vous amoureux.

La chine accueille le concept de réduction du niveau de consommation, un développement inquiétant pour Pékin et le reste du monde. En Chine, pendant des années, le discours tournait autour de l’augmentation du niveau de consommation. Etant donné que l’économie était en plein essor, la classe-moyenne chinoise forte et croissante de plus de 400 millions d’actifs, décidait de dépenser ces gros gains. Ils ont échangé leurs marques locales contre des Nike, leurs téléphones chinois contre des iPhones et sont passés du thé au latte à 5 dollars du Starbucks. A présent, la Chine voit son économie ralentir et il y va de même pour le shopping. Le marché boursier s’effondre, la monnaie chinoise perd de sa valeur; la guerre commerciale avec le président Trump laisse un goût amer au sein de la population.

La consommation n’a en aucun cas baissé en Chine mais sur internet, les chinois parlent de réduire les dépenses petit à petit. On laisse tomber les avocats, on prend le vélo au lieu du taxi, on préfère les bières aux cocktails en s’assurant qu’elles ne sont pas artisanales, on commande du thé au lait en taille moyenne et on oublie la grande taille, on abandonne son abonnement en salle de sport pour des cours de danse dans les espaces publiques comme les femmes âgées. Certains plaisantent en disant qu’il vaut mieux manger de la viande plutôt que du Tofu étant donné que les taxes sur l’importation du soja ont augmenté. Le plus inquiétant pour les dirigeants chinois est surtout que beaucoup de jeunes sont de plus en plus réticents à l’idée d’avoir des enfants.

Un post intitulé La jeune génération chinoise se prépare à affronter des jours difficiles, par Ming Na, blogueuse, a reçu plus de 300.000 vus sur la plateforme de médias sociaux WeChat en l’espace d’un weekend plus tôt ce mois-ci. Elle conseille aux jeunes de ne plus acheter dans les centres commerciaux et de ne plus fréquenter les clubs. <<Le moment de revoir notre consommation à la baisse est arrivé avec un grand coup de massue>>, écrit Mlle Na.

Chen Siqi a bien reçu le message. Comptable de 30 ans vivant à Pékin, elle vient de s’acheter un vide-ordures sur Pinduoduo, une application chinoise spécialisée dans la vente de produits bon marché, parfois de mauvaise qualité et qui étaient au départ très prisés par les habitants des zones rurales. Son salaire mensuel s’élève à environ 1400 dollars après déduction des taxes, pratiquement la moitié de celui-ci est engloutit par le loyer de son deux pièces. Mlle Chen dit avoir atteint un âge où elle aimerait vivre dans son propre appartement au lieu de vivre en colocation. Dans le but de faire des économies, elle cuisine quelques fois à la maison durant la semaine et achète ses vêtements sur des sites de vendeurs bon marché ou chez Uniqlo, la marque japonaise low-cost. <<J’aimerais avoir un style de vie plus décent mais je ne sais pas comment je pourrais me le permettre>>, affirme-t-elle.

Une baisse du niveau de consommation en Chine peut se ressentir à travers le monde. Les consommateurs chinois ont joué un rôle clé dans le développement économique de leur pays ces dernières années. La Chine à son tour a joué un rôle majeur dans la croissance mondiale. Les consommateurs chinois contribuent à la croissance des entreprises internationales telles qu’Apple, General Motors, Volkswagen et bien d’autres. Si Mr Trump a déjà la certitude que Pékin ne peut pas se permettre plus de dommages économiques, une baisse de la consommation pourrait l’encourager à renforcer cette bataille commerciale avec la Chine.

L’économie chinoise semble forte en théorie mais en pratique, elle présente plusieurs anomalies. Le rythme de la croissance des ventes au détail de cette année est le plus lent depuis plus de dix ans, de même pour l’évolution des salaires dans le secteur privé depuis la crise financière internationale. Le marché boursier a perdu un cinquième de sa valeur.

JD.com, une entreprise chinoise spécialisée dans le e-commerce et qui propose des produits de qualité à la classe moyenne chinoise, affichait des résultats semestriels décevants. Des facteurs à long terme, comme l’augmentation du prix de l’éducation, entraînent une baisse des dépenses chez les jeunes en particulier. Il est devenu très compliqué pour beaucoup d’entre eux de se loger dans les villes riches telles que Pékin. Le prix des loyers est tellement élevé que Mr Wang Jiazhi, 34 ans et ingénieur en semi-conducteurs a dû quitter son deux pièces acheté en 2016 dans le sud de la ville de Shenzhen. En effet, pour pouvoir rembourser son prêt immobilier qui lui coûte plus de 700 dollars par mois et un proche qui lui avait prêté la somme nécessaire pour l’acompte de l’achat de son appartement, il a mis celui-ci en location et partage un cinq pièces avec neuf autres hommes; ce qui lui permet d’économiser 160 dollars tous les mois, sur un salaire d’environ 2000 dollars après paiement des charges. De même que beaucoup de chinois, Mr Wang pense qu’il est préférable d’avoir un appartement afin de trouver une compagne. Mais à cause du stress lié à ses dettes et au soutien financier qu’il apporte à sa famille vivant à la campagne, il a décidé de remettre ses projets de mariage à plus tard. De toute façon ses chances n’étaient pas très grandes alors pour faire des économies, il a mis fin aux rancards, <<Je fais des heures supp’>> dit-il, <<ça m’occupe>>.

En effet, la baisse de consommation bat son plein.

Malgré l’effondrement du marché boursier chinois, les actions des entreprises qui fabriquent des produits de base à des prix abordables comme Erguotou, spécialisé dans la fabrication de liqueur bon marché et de légumes marinés, ont réussi à inverser la tendance. <<Buvez de l’Erguotou et mangez des légumes marinés>> écrivait Mlle Na, blogueuse, en utilisant des mèmes Internet chinois populaires. <<Faites appel à Mobike>> a-t-elle ajouté, nommant une compagnie de vélos en libre-service qui propose des courses à deux roues pour quelques centimes.

Même les enfants uniques des familles de classe moyenne qui constituent un groupe largement à l’abris financièrement, ont des raisons de s’inquiéter pour leur avenir. Wu Xiaoqiong est âgée de 28 ans et vit à l’ouest de la province de Hefei. Elle travaille pour une grande compagnie Internet à Pékin et touche un salaire mensuel de 1500 dollars après prélèvement des charges. Quand elle s’est mariée l’an dernier, ses parents et ses beaux-parents ont chacun avancé la moitié de l’apport pour l’achat d’un deux pièces, un arrangement fréquent entre familles de classe moyenne. Environ deux tiers de leurs revenus mensuels est utilisé pour le remboursement du prêt immobilier et pour la location d’un petit appartement à Shanghai où son mari travail dans une banque publique. Son plan pour réduire ses dépenses est de rester sans enfants. <<Nous n’avons ni économies ni plan de retraite>>, affirme-t-elle, <<mes parents continuent de m’aider financièrement, comment pourrais-je élever un enfant?>>.

Certains s’opposent à l’idée d’avoir plus d’enfants, un problème pour les autorités chinoises qui s’inquiètent du vieillissement de la population.

<<Pensez-vous avoir d’autres enfants?>>, Li Keli, agent comptable chez un fabricant de matériels électroniques dans le sud de la ville de Huizhou répond <<Certainement pas>>. En juin dernier, son usine a licencié les deux tiers des salariés quand la guerre commerciale s’est intensifiée entre la Chine et les Etats-Unis. Son salaire mensuel de 500 dollars a subi une baisse de 10%. Elle voyageait souvent les weekends pour aller visiter les villes voisines avec son fils de 7 ans; désormais, ils se contentent des aires de jeux gratuites dans les quartiers résidentiels.

On ressent aussi de l’inquiétude parmi ceux qui gagnent plutôt bien leur vie. Chen Ying, une architecte de 33 ans vivant à Shanghai met une croix sur le shopping dans les grands magasins. Mlle Chen ajoute qu’elle ne s’attend pas à voir son salaire augmenter, car celui de ses jeunes collègues n’atteint pas celui qu’elle touchait quand elle est arrivée dans l’entreprise quatre ans plus tôt; et aujourd’hui, ses revenus sont moins élevés que ceux de ses anciens collègues qui, il y a quatre ans, avaient son niveau d’expérience actuel. Les augmentations de salaire avoisinaient les taux de 15-20% par an, ce qui n’est pas étonnant pour un secteur dont la croissance a explosé en Chine au cours de ces dix dernières années. A présent, Mlle Chen prévoit une augmentation de 5%, si toutefois il y en avait une. Elle aimerait prendre sa retraite mais ne saurait par où commencer. <<Avant, nous avions des perspectives d’avenir illimitées>>, conclue-t-elle, <<aujourd’hui, nous vivons au jour le jour>>.