oç it's the top of the hour and it's a tuesday evening here in japan. welcome to this hour's "newsline." we start off with a quick look at the hour's top stories. the chinese government has released its military strategy. the white paper criticizes countries outside the region for meddling in affairs in the south china sea. american leaders say their surveillance missions over the disputed islands are needed to keep peace in the region. and japanese experts are
tapping into technologies developed overseas to help decommission the nuclear plant in fukushima. chinese defense officials have asserted that they will never compromise on territorial claims in the south china sea. they released a white paper criticizing countries outside the area for interfering in regional disputes. >> translator: the chinese military will take necessary measures towards u.s. military aircraft that are conducting reconnaissance activities near china. in accordance with the law. >> the paper does not make direct reference to the united states, but it says some ex- external countries are meddling in affairs in the region. it warns that china will engage in a long-term effort to safeguard its maritime rights and interests. it says leaders will place priority on maintaining military preparedness to defend the country's sovereignty. china has been carrying out reclamation work at several locations in the spratly
islands. beijing and several other parties claim them. the u.s. military has responded by stepping up reconnaissance activities. the white paper stresses the chinese navy will expand its scope of operations to areas farther from shore. air force commanders will shift their focus from defending territory at home to prepare for forward-strike operations. and defense officials say they'll strengthen their ability to fight in cyberspace. the report also refers to japan's efforts to enact new security legislation and strengthen its alliance with the u.s. it says officials in tokyo are seeking to overturn the post-war security framework and adds other countries in the region are closely watching these developments. u.s. congressman mike rodgers has expressed concern about the reclamation project in the south china sea. the senior member of the house armed services committee said china has been aggressive. he said the speed at which the country's advancing is a threat
that cannot be ignored. and he emphasized the necessity for japan, the u.s. and neighboring countries to work together. >> if we continue to work collaboratively and are successful in our efforts to meet whatever effort they bring so that they know ultimately it's not going to be successful in achieving the ends that they desire. >> rogers also said there's a need for the u.s. to deploy military technology to japan and elsewhere in the asia-pacific to respond to possible threats from north korea. u.s. officials say their surveillance missions over the disputed islands are needed to maintain order in the region. nhk world's reporter reports. >> reporter: this video was released last thursday. it was taken aboard a u.s. navy p-8 plane operating in the south china sea. >> we're in a fiery cross reef. you see the landing strip being built. hundreds of meters in the past couple of months.
>> reporter: they're also audio transcriptions of contact between u.s. and china. a chinese navy personnel tells the american plane it's approaching china's military zone. then asks the aircraft to leave the area immediately. the u.s. crew responds that he's operating in international airspace according to international law. u.s. officials have hinted at the possibility of sending military vessels to waters china claims to be its territory. the area is within the radius of about 22 kilometers from the reclaimed islands. they say they're responding to china's ongoing projects to reclaim the reefs in the spratly islands. a photo taken last september shows the work had begun in one of the reefs. another image taken six months later is dramatically different. the reef has turned into a piece of land. and the construction appears to include a landing strip that could be used to allow for
military operations. six parties including china are locked in a sovereignty dispute over the spratly islands. china has been seen carrying out reclamation work at several locations in the islands. their counterpowers in washington are critical of the move. >> we do unapologetically stand up for the equitable and peaceful resolution of disputes and for the freedom of navigation. and today these principles are being tested by chinese activities. >> chinese officials are calling for the surveillance sites to stop. >> translator: the u.s. reconnaissance activity is very dangerous and irresponsible. it could cause unexpected incidents at sea or in the air. >> reporter: secretary of state john kerry met face to face this month with chinese president xi
jinping to discuss his concerns. but political observers suggest the talks were also aimed at finding ways to ease tensions. military leaders from both sides are working to improve communications. they set up a direct video hotline last month. the move came after a chinese fighter jet and a u.s. patrol aircraft flew just ten meters away from each other in the south china sea last august. as chinese officials ignore calls for the construction work to stop american leaders say they will step up their presence. and they say they'll coordinate with southeastern nations to keep a close eye on the islands. kaho izumitani, nhk world. >> we'll have more updates on this story here on "newsline." it may be a question of a few percentage points but when it comes to tariffs on imported japanese cars it can amount to millions of dollars. ramin from our business desk has the details of an ongoing
dispute between japan and indonesia. so ramin, what is the main sticking point here? >> well james, there's a lot of money involved here and japanese carmakers are disputing a slight point of overpayment, and that's really one of the big issues. trade officials in tokyo say indonesia has mistakenly overcharged automakers tens of millions of dollars in tariffs for imported japanese cars. they say that's apparently due to an administrative error. japanese trade minister says officials from both governments will sit down to find a solution. >> translator: it is true that the tariff rates that have been imposed are different from those agreed in the bilateral economic partnership agreement. we will have talks later this month concerning the issue. >> the free trade deal between japan and indonesia took effect in 2008. indonesia agreed to gradually
lower tariffs on vehicles such as minivans from 60% to 5%. japanese officials say the correct rate for those cars from 2012 to this year is 20%. but they say that indonesian customs officials since 2013 have been mistakenly applying rates that were 2 to 8 percentage points higher. the officials say the indonesian government has so far been unwilling to correct the apparent error. but they say they hope to reach an agreement and have the correct rates applied by the end of the year. japan's third largest airline may face headwinds in getting its rehabilitation plan off the ground. sources say skymark's biggest creditor doesn't want the operator of all nippon airways to be involved. skymark filed for bankruptcy protection in january. the sources say u.s. aircraft leasing firm intrepid aviation opposes efforts by ana holdings to take a stake in the carrier. intrepid has leased seven aircraft to skymark and has
filed claims of more than 800$800 million million, roughly one-third of the carrier's total debt. skymark has until friday to present the plan to tokyo district court. integral supports the carrier's proposed rehabilitation. it needs to be approved by a majority of skymark's creditors. the focus is now on whether the airline can gain the support of other major creditors. they include european aircraft maker airbus. now, shipments of home appliances in japan remain sluggish. officials of the japanese electrical manufacturers association say the figures for april show a sharp drop from a year earlier. they say that's due to a dent in demand after a rise in the sales tax last year. the association says total shipments came to nearly $1.2 billion in april. that's down 8.4% in yen terms from the same month in the previous year.
it's the seventh straight month of decline. shipments of refrigerators dropped by more than 20%. air conditioners by 15%. and those of washing machines also fell by 12%. last year the consumers went on a last-minute buying spree to beat a tax hike in april 2014 but many of the shipments weren't made until after that. association officials say the effects of the tax increase will likely weaken gradually and shipments will ease into positive territory. managers at japanese firms are paying more for the services they receive. prices of corporate services rose in april for the 22nd straight month. bank of japan officials say the services producer price index increased 0.7% last month from a year earlier. they say one factor is the rise in the cost of hotel accommodations. this results from increased use of hotels by businesses and overseas travelers. the officials also attribute the higher prices to an increase in
the cost of trucking goods. they say this was led by a shortage of drivers in the industry. now checking markets. tokyo stocks rose for the eighth day. that's the longest winning streak since august. and the benchmark nikkei average hit another 15-year high gaining 0.1% to close at 20,437. a lot of investors booked profits from recent gains, but others fought export-related shares on a weaker yen. the dollar hit its highest point since the summer of 2007. many traders bought the u.s. currency on speculation that the federal reserve will raise the key interest rate this year. let's move on to chinese markets. the shanghai composite retained its strong upward momentum. the index jumped another 2% to hit a fresh seven-year high. over the weekend, government officials announced the start of a cross-border mutual fund investment scheme with hong kong. this announcement also boosted
sentiment. it rose to a one-month high. market players bought shares of financials, anticipating that more money will be flowing in from mainland china. in other markets in the asia-pacific region sydney extended its gains, reaching its highest level in three weeks. higher iron ore prices leading investors to buy resource-related shares. indonesia rebounded from losses on monday. and philippines stretching its losses. now, many people who want to buy a quick, easy meal may go to a fast food restaurant. if you want to hear live music, they may go to a club. but people in south korea can enjoy these things at an unconventional place. nhk world's reporter has the story. >> reporter: this is a college campus in south korea. in march, a new shop opened that was unlike anything the students had seen before. the most popular item is pizza
served hot from the oven. >> translator: it's warm and tastes good. i come here a lot. >> reporter: chicken dishes are also prepared and cooked on the premises. but this isn't a student cafeteria. it's a convenience store. the cafeteria corner of the shop is part of a spacious layout that stretches over 330 square meters. students can grab a meal and study at the same time. the shop even has a semiprivate booth where students can put on their makeup. south korea has more than 27,000 convenience stores. that's triple the number compared to ten years ago. more than 1,000 new shops have opened this year alone.
>> translator: sales at malls and department stores have been dropping. only convenience stores have continued to grow. the competition will get more intense as the market gets more and more saturated. >> reporter: last month this convenience store in the capital, seoul, began a new kind of service. >> translator: we're going to do a live show here today. >> reporter: it's offering equipment and space to bands free of charge so they can give concerts. ♪ managers are hoping this will help the shops stand out and attract more customers. another convenience store in the district has set up.
the original idea was to target foreign tourists but the 24-hour service has also become popular among young people who go clubbing in the area late at night. >> translator: we're trying to make convenience stores not just places that sell goods but also spaces for customers to have a new experience and have fun. >> reporter: convenience stores have enjoyed a strong growth by offering daily necessities. now they are looking to keep the momentum by giving customers what they want, not just what they need. kim chan-ju, nhk world, seoul. beer sales in japan have been falling for many years. breweries are now trying to expand the market with products aimed at health-conscious consumers. sapporo breweries has begun selling the country's first
alcohol-free beer that's officially certified as being good for you. the company says the beverage helps curb the absorption of sugar by the body. consumers affairs agency in february gave sapporo permission to label the beer as a food for specified health uses. it's the first nonalcoholic beer to be included in that category. >> translator: we want to expand our customer base with healthy, value-added products. >> the three other major japanese breweries, asahi, santori plan to introduce similar beers. that's all for business news for this hour. i'll leave you with a look at the region's markets.
japan's imperial couple has paid their respects to people in tokyo who died during world war ii. emperor and empress offered prayers for the victims of usair raids. the imperial couple visited a memorial hall in downtown tokyo where the remains of unidentified victims of the raids have been laid to rest. 200 people attended the ceremony including local residents and city officials. the attacks in march 1945 killed about 100,000 people and destroyed more than 260,000 homes. another series of raids in april and may claimed thousands of more lives. the imperial couple has been visiting memorials in japan and overseas to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of the war. india's leader is marking one year on the job. prime minister modi says his
policies have helped turn around the economy. modi steered the opposition party to victory last may on a pledge to revive growth. he gave a speech highlighting the progress his government has made so far. >> translator: india was viewed as a country with no prospects, but now we've managed to regain trust trust. foreign investment is rolling in. >> not everyone is on board, though. opposition lawmakers have blocked reforms designed to cut red tape. they say modi's plans to make it easier to acquire land for infrastructure and factories are too pro-business. modi used his speech to call for the public's support and said he's determined to advance india's development and make changes that benefit everyone. a group of experts from japan has been on a mission
overseas. they went in search of technology to help with the decommissioning process at the crippled nuclear plant in fukushima. >> reporter: the group's members are from the nuclear damaged decommissioning corporation. experts estimate is it will take 40 years to decommission the plant's reactors. they say relying on japanese technologies alone won't be enough to get the job done. >> translator: we need to look meticulously into technologies not only from japan but from abroad as well. >> reporter: the inspectors traveled to the u.s. state of south carolina to meet with researchers at the savannah river national laboratory. the lab was a hub for nuclear weapons development during the cold war and produced plutonium for nuclear bombs. cleaning up leftover radioactive substances is an ongoing job.
the lab continues to come up with new technologies to make the job go smoothly. one in particular caught the eye of the japanese inspectors. it's a system inzooindesigned to provide a virtual tour of a building's interior. >> we can plan it here in the virtual world, practice in the virtual world, put robotics in the virtual world, virtual robots. >> reporter: the system uses information on the layout and the positioning of equipment to generate three-dimensional images. those images can be combined with radiation data collected remotely by robot. this allows workers to determine how much radiation they could be exposed to inside. the inspectors also went to a trade show in arizona featuring decommissioning technologies from around the world. the show featured one type of technology that could be used immediately in fukushima. it's a foam made from a mixture of chemicals including a detergent. scientists from an american
company and a national research institute developed it. the inspectors thought the foam could be used in pipes at the fukushima daiichi plant. they're full of radioactive substances. cleaning the pipes is one of the biggest challenges in the decontamination effort. the inspectors say that injecting the foam into the pipes could loosen up contaminated substances and make cleaning them easier. the foam has already been used in decontamination projects. the manufacturer says it successfully removed at least 90% of the radioactivity. >> translator: i hope we can gather deaconcontamination technologies from around the world and apply them in fukushima. >> reporter: the people in charge of decommissioning the fukushima daiichi plant face a number of hurdles. the biggest is the dangerous job of removing melted nuclear fuel from the damaged reactors. the inspectors will keep searching for cutting-edge technologies from japan and
overseas to meet the challenges. people in india are separate desperately seeking relief from a deadly heat wave. they've seen temperatures 20745 degrees celsius. officials are blaming the hot weather for more than 500 deaths. the mercury soared on monday in eastern parts of the country. some areas recorded highs of 47 degrees. people in the capital, new delhi, saw temperatures hit 45.5. heat stroke and dehydration have caused most of the deaths. authorities say many of the victims were construction workers, elderly or homeless. patients are flooding hospitals across the country, but they're finding little relief as many air conditioners and electric fans are not working because of frequent blackouts. officials are doing all they can to help. they have set up aid stations to hand out water and dairy products. and they're urging people to stay indoors. weather forecasters are warning that the high temperatures will
continue. they say the heat wave may last until the end of the week. the expected high for ludiana in punjab is 115 degrees fahrenheit, or 46 degrees celsius. unimaginable temperatures for us here in japan. but the mercury is climbing in east asia as jonathan oh tells us. jonathan. >> hello. we are talking about temperatures moving into the 30s for many parts of northern east asia. we're talking also into japan. temperatures are moving into the 30s in many areas. we have high pressure that is in place, and it's bringing in the southerly flow from the south and also moving in over land and pushing into the east. so as long as this setup continues, we're going to see these temperatures moving into the 30s for daytime highs. i know many people around the area reporting that these are very warm conditions. this is not normal for this time of the year. many times we're supposed to see these temperatures closer to
late june into july. look at this for monday. 30 in tokyo. 32 in beijing. we're seeing these temperatures really moving up. and then on tuesday, we saw temperatures very similar to these. and i think we're going to see these warm temperatures continue. look at this. high pressure continues to control the weather as we progress into wednesday. the areas down toward the south, we are seeing that rainy season front in place. so we will continue to see the wet weather, flooding concerns are in place. we may even see a few strong thunderstorms popping up. you notice these purple shades. those are where the heavier rain bands should be developing as we go into wednesday. please keep that in mind. still very warm temperatures in place even in the areas where we are seeing the rain. 30 in taipei. 31 in hong kong. 34 down toward manila. we're seeing a repeat of warm conditions from beijing to tokyo as we go throughout wednesday. now, if we look forward into the forecast and seeing if we're going to see a cooldown that's not going to be the case. look at this thursday friday. still seeing 30s in many areas from beijing.
busan still above average. you're supposed to be around 22. we'll see highs of around 30 coming up on wednesday. and 33 in kyoto as we go into the next day. now, be that as it may, we are seeing much more serious conditions as we look at the forecast for south asia. we are seeing temperatures that are brutally hot. some areas seeing highs of up to 47 degrees. and this was on monday as we see the reported highs. and areas especially in the eastern portions of india are in a very serious state because we are going to see these oppressively hot conditions continuing on as we go into wednesday and thursday. look at this. new delhi, 43 degrees on wednesday. 44 on thursday. mid-40s also throughout other portions of india and south asia. and so because of the hot weather along with the issues with the electricity, and we're seeing these blackouts running around from time to time this is going to be a very dangerous
situation. and unfortunately, we're not going to see any relief from the southwest monsoon because it's not time for it yet. we are seeing it mainly on cue for the moment with the bands moving in. but we have to go all the way into the middle to late june before the rain starts moving in. so this is going to be something that is going to be very serious as we progress on throughout the next several weeks. now, we are talking about a very different story. shvery strong thunderstorms as we look at the forecast for north america. we have a cold front that still continues to pound some of these storms into texas all the way into places like kansas and nebraska. so we're looking out for another chance for some severe weather. slight risk into areas like dallas and oklahoma city. cincinnati into nashville, you're also looking at the possibility of seeing some hail gusts and also some tornadoes as we go through tuesday. look at this a light of lightning icons meaning we see a chance of thunderstorms from toronto into atlanta as we go through tuesday. i hope you have a good day wherever you are. here's your extended outlook.
' ines. the iraqi army launches an operation to take back ramadi from the islamic state. the first hearing in the spy trial of "washington post" correspondent jason rezaian opens and closes in iraq today. an indian prime minister modi marks his first year in office. amid criticism that his government caters to the wealthy. mexican taxi drivers become the latest to protest against the rise of car-hailing app uber.