• External Territorial conflict for the Senkaku islands with Japan

    The people’s republic of China deals with territorial disputes with Japan and the Republic of China (Taiwan), indeed the Senkaku islands are claimed by those three countries. These islands are located in the north of Taiwan in the East China Sea. Since 1895, the islands are controlled by Japan under the Treaty of Shimonoseki but then why are there so many conflicts at present? The answer is simple, it is for economic reasons. Indeed, in 1972, potential hydrocarbon deposits were discovered nearby the Senkaku islands. So it is for strategic reasons that Japan, China and Taiwan are arguing for the control of the islands. Taiwan is defending the fact that these islands are geographically closest to its territory, China is defending the fact that historically, the islands had always been his before the Japanese occupation and finally Japan defends the fact that these islands are legally their thanks to the Treaty and the fact that China and Taiwan have not claimed the islands earlier and have waited that the deposit was discovered in 1972 to do something.


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  • Opening of Shanghai Disneyland Resort

    The big date is coming! In less of one week the 16 of June, The second Disneyland of China will be opened in Chuansha town in Pudong district near Shanghai.

    This complex will be the second in China after the Hong Honk Disneyland and the third in Asia with the Tokyo Disneyland.

    The possibility to open a new park in China has been evocated before the opening of the Hong Kong Dineyland in 2005. Jay Rasulo the director of Walt Disney Parks and resorts was sure that a market existed in the north of China for a second Disneyland. The construction also started in 2011 with an investment of 34 billion yuan (about 4.7 billion euros)

    The park has been completely recreated to ensure true originality. The park will be the largest of all Disney parks in the world and it will have many new novelty such an unusual castle, aquatic attractions, lands completely renewed and new shows inspired by Chinese culture. There will be 7 lands in the park including Mickey Avenue, Gardens of Imagination, Tomorrowland, Fantasyland, Treasure Cove and Adventure Isle.

    Disneyland Shanghai gave many opportunities for the city. According to the China Tourism Academy (CTA), the national tourism receipts amounted last year to 4000 billion yuan (539 billion euros), of which 230 billion were generated by amusement parks. The CTA researcher believe that Shanghai Disneyland will have a major impact on the transport sector, on real estate, on the hotel industries and on businesses in general. For example Ctrip.com estimates that the park was expected to attract 16 million visitors a year, they also started to develop more than 100 different combination of travel, accommodation and entertainment. The travel company also estimates that thanks to the opening of the Park, sales of travel in eastern China are expected to double. Consequently, the aviation sector could also grow considerably, in fact the opening of Disneyland Shanghai will see an increase of about 3 million of air travellers to Shanghai in 2016. Since the beginning of this year, more flights are handled by Pudong Airport in Shanghai, the closest airport of Shanghai Disney Resort. Estimation show that the number of flights is expected to peak at around 1370 to 1410 a day after the opening of the site.

    For the opening date more than 20 000 tickets were sold in 30 minutes, Disney can also expect a visitor record on June 16. However the park will be so huge that it could welcome about 100 000 people.  By the way, a survey revealed that the expected crowds at Shanghai Disneyland would discourage local people to go there.
    Two Shanghainese over three have decided to not go to Disneyland this year, according to the survey conducted by the Municipal Bureau of Statistics in April. The main reason for this decision is their desire to avoid the crowds. Among those willing to discover the Disneyland park this year, more than 37 % intend to take one or two days off during the week to avoid long queues during weekends and public holidays. 


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  • Yesterday, I’ve visited the famous Jade Temple Buddha located in Jing’an district in Shanghai.

    This temple built between 1918 and 1928, is one of the Shanghai few active Buddhist monasteries. The master piece is a magnificent Buddha crafted from pure jade, returned to China with four other statues of Buddha by the monk Hui Gen at the turn of the 20th century, after a pilgrimage from Buddhist island of Putuoshan to Burma through Tibet.

    In February, during the Chinese Lunar New Year, the temple is very busy, about 20,000 Buddhists come here to pray for prosperity.

    The temple layout

    Chamber of Four Heavenly Kings

    The Chamber of Heavenly Kings is composed of four large statues of the kings of growth, knowledge, omnipotence and protection. This room also contains a beautiful statue of a laughing buddha back to back with the statue of Weituo, the guardian of Buddhism.

    Jade Buddha TempleJade Buddha Temple

    Great Hall

    The first courtyard, decorated with red lanterns and slabs engraved with lotus flowers, leads to the hall of great treasure also called Great Hall. The faithful pray here the Buddha of past, present and future, who are seated on thrones beautifully sculpted. The main room also contains 18 unique golden arhats stand in two groups of nine and also the bell and the drum of the temple.

    Jade Buddha Temple

    Jade Buddha Chamber

    The Jade Buddha Chamber contains the master piece of the temple, a splendid pale green jade Buddha of 1,9m. Unfortunately we cannot approach the sculpture. Even if it’s the master piece of the temple I’ve found the four Heavenly Kings much more impressive.

    Jade Buddha Temple

    Ancestral Hall

    In the ancestral hall there is a reclining Jade Buddha and next to this room we can find the room that welcomes Buddhist offices. I had the chance to attend a Buddhist ceremony with monks and many faithful, this was really interesting and its give me a complete change of scene!


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  • Obviously I had to write something about the Bund and the financial quarter of Lujiazui because it’s the first thing which came to my mind when the city of Shanghai is named.

    The Bund is the boulevard of the city of Shanghai, it is made with sumptuous European style buildings and colonial banks or companies of the Thirty years. Located in the former concession of Shanghai, the Bund is in Puxi at east of the Huangpu district, on the west side of the Huangpu river. It is facing the new financial district of Lujiazui in Pudong district located on the other side on the river.

     

    The bund measuring 1.5 km, along Zhongshan Road. On this road there are 52 types of European buildings that symbolize the colonial architecture of the Bund. The architectural style ranges from Romanesque to Gothic through the Renaissance styles, from Baroque, neo classical, Fine Arts and finally Art Deco.

    The main Buildings are:

    • Asia Building
    • Shanghai Club
    • Union Building (three on the Bund)
    • HSBC Building : Asia’s largest bank at the beginning of the century
    • The Customs House : The clock and bell was built in England and in imitation of Big ben
    • China Bank of Communications Building
    • Russo-Chinese Bank Building
    • Chartered Bank Building ( 18 on the Bund)

     


    Let’s return to the 18 on the Bund (Chartered Bank Building). This is a building in which we spend a lot of time because of the amazing view that it allows to have on Pudong. In fact at the 7th and last floor, you can find the Bar Rouge. It is a really nice night cub with an amazing rooftop terrace. Here we can dance and have a drink while admiring the beautiful view of the lighted towers of Pudong.  

     

     

     

     

     Talking about Pudong, the bund will not be such a thing without it. In 1990 the Chinese government decided to open a special economic zone in the Pudong district fostering the development of a major business district called Lujiazui. Today we can find in this area buildings that have become the symbols of the Chinese economic boom. The four tallest towers are the Jin Mao Tower (1996, 420 meters, 88 floors), the Oriental Pearl (1995, 468 meters), the Shanghai World Financial Center usually called the bottle opener because of its shape (2008, 492 meters and 101 floors) and the Shanghai Center which is the second tallest towers in the world (2015, 632 meters, 127 floors).

    Every evening this incredible skyline is illuminated starting from 18 pm until 23 pm on the summer, so it’s the best hours to be filled with wonder.


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  • So last week we spend our spring break in Philippines. That was really an amazing experience full of news adventures, let me tell you why! First we travelled in really funny and unbelievable way from boat to tricycle, tuk tuk and minivan.

     

     

    We first arrived in Manilla and then we took a huge ferry boat during 15 hours, hopefully for us there were some bunk bed and food to help us getting through the travel. We finally arrive in Coron, a beautiful town in the Palawan Island. This town is known for its wonderful seabed full of multicolour fish and coral. For 4 days we could enjoyed it by doing snorkelling and boat tours. That was really breath-taking and the landscape were beautiful. During these 4 days we met of lot of amazing Philippians people. I was really surprised to discover how the Philippians were nice and welcoming, on day we were on the beach and a Philippians family invited us to join them to lunch, they gived us some plates and gived us the food that they cooked on the morning. They shared everything spontaneously and generously.

    After those 4 days we took a kind of speed boat to go to El Nido, another town in Palawan Island. This ride was the most hard in my life because we have been taken into a sea storm so the boat moved a lot and half of the passengers were sick. But now it past I will keep a funny memory of its adventure!

    In El Nido we met some of our Shanghai Friends and some of our friend who studied in Seoul and in Suwon in South Korea so it was nice to be all together in the same place for holiday. El Nido offers a lot of activities like boat tours, biking or snorkelling but the best in El Nido is the beach. I think I have never seen such beautiful landscape before with so many coconut, hammock and white sand, in one word: the DREAM.

     

     

    The night we could enjoy the sunset and the warm form restaurants and bars on the beach, that was a really cool atmosphere. I really enjoy this trip, for the beauty of the landscape, the islands for the sun, the warm and finally for having the chance to be reunited with my friends to share this experience.

    To see all the picture of my trip click here

    Now I’m back in Shanghai for my last month in University so I am going to try to enjoy it at 100% !!


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