What!? What are you talking about?
That is what people say to me when I am talking to them. This is sad because I know what’s wrong with me. That is my pronunciation being so bad.
People say Japanese people are not good at pronouncing English words or any other languages. This is because Japanese language has the simplest pronunciation. The language only has 5 vowels. Even though they have a lot of consonants, the way to understand Japanese language is to listen to the vowels that is pronounced every to letters of any words. What this means is that Japanese, many Japanese put some kind of vowels in every after any consonants. What does it mean? It means a lot of other language speakers cannot understand many words that Japanese speaks because those who are not speaking Japanese use a lot of non vowel sounds.
Other problem is that Japanese language has a lot of English-like words. This means Japanese use words from the English language, and pronounce the words in Japanese way. For example, bottle is pronounced as botoru, putting a vowel every after a consonant. This pronunciation may not make sense for non Japanese. And the problem is, many Japanese learn English by using the Japanese way of pronunciation when they are students. Teachers may try to make students pronounce properly but many students are not confident of their pronunciation, therefore they tend to use Japanese pronunciation not to be ashamed when talking to class or in groups.
Having Japanese pronunciations is also a problem for listening skills. Especially for me studying in a course for international students in Australia, I have a difficulty in listening. In Australian courses which are for international students, there are a lot of students from China, Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam and so on, which are south east Asian countries. As you may know many of them speak similar languages. They have short sounds, very fast and maybe close to English pronunciation as they are likely to have more sounds than English does. What this means is that people from those countries can easily understand each others in English. Thus, they talk as fast as everyone who are south east asian can understand to them, which means I, as a Japanese, have a problem in understanding their language.
These are only a few examples of problems that Japanese may encounter when they are speaking English.