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Unit 7 future 1


 Will A


 We can use will + the infinitive (without to) to refer to the future. Will is usually shortened in speech and informal writing to ll. The negative of will is wont.


 We use will to talk about future events that we see as facts:

Next year Ill be 45.

The government will soon impose an obligation on all electricity supply to buy a specified percentage of their power from renewable sources.


 We use will to talk about future beliefs:

Lynch believes that globalization and consolidation in the technology sector will create a greater demand for large and powerful bourses. Stock market will have to cover a lot more market capitalisation and smaller markets will have less of a role says Lynch.


 We can add perhaps/maybe or probably to make the belief less certain:

The first wave of job losses resulting from the mergers in German banking

will probably be in the City of London.


Notice that probably comes after will but before wont.

Hell probably agree with you.

He probably wont agree with you.


 We can use will with an introductory phrase to give other meanings. For example, a personal opinion (I think) or a hope (I hope):

I think well probably open a subsidiary in Russia next year.


 Will can be used for instant decisions and thoughts that come into our head at the moment of speaking.

Ill wait for you outside. Ill phone you tomorrow.


 Going to B


 We use the verb be + going to + the infinitive to make a connection between the present and the future.


 We use going to for plans and intentions. These are things we have already decided to do.



I think we can get by with a smaller budget.

(= manage to do things)

I believe that Greenspan is going to lower rates. There are some signs of liquidity problems in the credit markets at this point in time, and a smart central bank responds by easing credit.


The time in the future can be near or distant:

Im going to call Fiona Clarke this afternoon.

Were going to open a factory in Hungary next year.


 We use going to make predictions when there is some evidence in the present situation:

Be careful! Its going to fall. (I can see it)

I think were going to lose this deal. (Ive just heard some news)


 Present Continuous C


 We can use the Present Continuous to talk about things we have arranged to do in the future. There is always a time expression.

Ann is leaving tomorrow morning.

HSBC are moving to new premises next year.


The arrangements are often social arrangements or appointments.

What are you doing on Tuesday afternoon?

Im seeing Jack at two, and after that Im meeting my bank manager.


 Will or going to? D


 Will is used for instant decisions. Going to is used for plans and intentions.


OK, I know what to do. Ill call Jane. (an instant decision)

Do you have the information for Jane? Im going to call her this afternoon.

(an intention)


 Will is used for general beliefs, opinions, hopes and things that the speaker sees as facts.

Im sure theyll like the new design.

In the future, more people will work from home.


 When will is used with a phrase like I think and/or words like probably then the belief/opinion becomes less certain, like a prediction.

I think youll like this idea.

The world will probably end in about five billion years.


But if there is strong evidence in the present situation then going to is



Will you just hold/hang on for a moment?

(= wait)

usually used for predictions:

I think its going to rain. (I can see black clouds) Were going to make a loss on this project. (I have the figures in front of me


 There are occasions when we can use either form:

In my presentation Ill take / Im going to take about three main areas.

First, ..


Here the speaker could see it as a fact (will) or an intention (going to).


 Will is more usual in writing. ll and going to are more usual in speech.


 Going to or the Present Continuous? E


 For future plans and arrangements there is often little difference between going to and the Present Continuous.

Im going to give / Im giving my presentation on Friday.


 Going to can suggest that the details of the arrangement have not been finalised. The Present Continuous can suggest that the arrangement is more fixed, with a time and a place.

Im going to meet him next week. (just a plan time and place are still unknown)

Im meeting him at ten next week. (a definite, fixed arrangement)


 Time expressions F

 Common time expressions for the future include: tomorrow, the day after

tomorrow, on Friday (Saturday, etc.), at the weekend, next week (month,

etc.), in a few days time.



Exercise 1 (A, B, C)

Match sentences 1 6 with their uses a) f).


a) a future fact

b) an opinion about the future c) an instant decision

d) a future plan or intention


e) a prediction with evidence in the present situation

f) a future arrangement



Im going to ask my boss for a pay rise next week.


Im sorry to hear that. Ill find out what the problem is right now.


Im sorry, but I wont be here tomorrow. Ill be in Paris.


Im meeting Angela for lunch. Do you want to join us?


Their share price will probably rise when the market recovers.


With so much competition its going to be difficult to increase sales.


Exercise 2 (D, E)

Underline the correct words in each mini-dialogue.


1 A: Are you free next Tuesday morning?

B: Sorry, Ill have / Im having a meeting with Sue. A: Oh, right. Well, what about Thursday?

2 A: What are your plans for next year?

B: Well open / Were going to open a new factory in Hungary. A: Thats sounds interesting.

3 A: What do you think about their new marketing campaign?

A: I think itll probably succeed / its probably succeeding. B: Do you really?

4 A: What about tomorrow at around five thirty?

A: OK, Ill see you then. / Im seeing you then. B: Bye.

5 A: So as you can see, Ive been thinking about this problem quite a lot.

B: Yes, I see. So, what are you going to do?/ What are you doing?

A: Resign!

6 A: It would be nice to see you next week.

7 B: Yes, it would. Are you doing anything / Will you do anything on Wednesday?

8 A.: No, Im free.



She might turn up at any moment.

(= arrive unexpectedly)

Exercise 3 (A, B, C, D, E)

Complete the sentences by putting the verbs in brackets into the most appropriate future form. Choose between will, going to and the Present Continuous.


1 Have heard the news? Vivendi .. (buy) Seagram.

2 I .. (need) Andrea at nine next Tuesday morning outside the station.

3 Ive just had a call from Richard he .. (be) late.

4 Next year .. (be) the companys centenary year.

5 This taxi driver is terrible. He .. (have) an accident.

6 In the future videoconferences .. (probably replace) many international meetings.

7 We .. (test) the new machine sometime next week.

8 I .. (go) to Manchester on Friday.

9 Would you mind waiting for a moment? I .. (not be) long.


Exercise 4 (A, B, D)

Complete this dialogue by putting each of the verbs in brackets into the future. Choose between will and going to. Sometimes either answer may be possible, but decide which form is the most natural. Use contractions where possible.


JOANNA: Please, come in, have a seat. Would you like to drink? Coffee? Mineral water?

GREG: Oh, I (1) .. (have) a coffee please.

JOANNA: Lucycould you make two coffees? Well, thanks for coming this morning. I (2) .. (tell) you why I asked you here. Um, as you know, there (3) .. (be) some big changes in the company. In fact, we (4) .. (restructure) the whole department.

GREG: Yes, I know. When (5) .. (it/happen)?

JOANNA: Everything (6) .. (be) finished by the summer. Um, the thing is, under the new structure your job (7) .. (probably/disappear).

GREG: Really? Is that certain?

JOANNA: Well, we (8) .. (have) a meeting next week to finalise all the

plans, and of course I (9) .. (let) you know what we decide. Anyway, you dont have to worry.


(coffee arrives)

JOANNA: Well, as I was saying, you dont have to worry. We (10) .. (offer) you a new job. You (11) .. (have) more responsibility, and the salary (12) .. (be) much better.



Ill call you back.

(= telephone again)

GREG: Thats wonderful, thank you very much. What exactly (13) .. (the new job/involve)?

JOANNA: Well, we (14) .. (expand) the whole customer services area. If you accept the job, you (15) .. (be) responsible for the new team. Um, it (16) .. (mean) a lot more work, of course. What do you think?

GREG: It sounds great, but I (17) .. (need) a day or two to think about it. JOANNA: Of course, no problem. Look, I (18) .. (not/be) in the office for the

next few days I (19) .. (visit) our subsidiary in Hungary. (20) .. (you/have) an answer for me by next week?

GREG: Yes, I (21) .. (give) you my decision on Monday.


Exercise 5 (A, C)

Complete this email from a PA to her boss by putting the verbs in brackets into the future. Choose between will and the Present Continuous. Use contractions where possible.



Mira Melisse


Pierre Guard, Technical Director


14 March


Visit to Slovenia




Ive booked your flight to Slovenia. You (1) .. (leave) to Tuesday 3rd at

8.45 in the morning, so you (2) .. (arrive) in Ljubljana before lunch. Someone (3).. (be) at the airport to meet you. The first meeting is with Aleksander Presekar, and you (4) .. (see) him at 1 pm at our local

office. He (5) .. (probably/take) you out to lunch. After lunch you (6) .. (not/do) anything until 4 pm, so you (7) .. (have) time to go to the hotel. You (8) .. (stay) at the Intercontinental, which is in a very central location. I (9) .. (go) to the travel agents to pick up the tickets this afternoon, so I (10) .. (give) them to you tomorrow.




Ill pay you back.

(= repay the money I borrowed)

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