Editorial on ELTNEWS.com
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Editorial

I wonder how many teachers realize the harm that is being done to the English language teaching profession in Japan whenever English teaching materials are ordered from overseas.

Associations, events and training courses for English teachers in Japan often depend on sponsorship by the major publishers, and this kind of sponsorship has declined a lot over the last ten to fifteen years. The publishers' Japan offices have had smaller budgets for providing this kind of support.

One of the main factors has been the tendency for books to be ordered from overseas. Individuals do it, universities do it, and many booksellers do it. Booksellers have often been able to order course materials at a low price in another country and sell them at a substantial profit in Japan. Little of this profit has been passed on to the customer.

With the yen being so strong at the moment, it is becoming even more attractive to order from overseas, and there is a very real possibility that the budgets of the Japan offices of the major western publishers will be hit even harder. This is likely to hurt associations such as ETJ and JALT.

It is time to make a stand

ELT.Books.com, which used to be the David English House Book Service, has always fought this trend. The store has always had a deliberate policy of obtaining books from western publishers' Japan offices so as to support the English language teaching profession in Japan, and has still managed to pass on substantial discounts to customers. Why not check that your school or your bookseller is doing the same?



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