INTERVIEW: Japan to Call on U.S. to Take Action in Trade Talks


Tokyo, Dec. 27 (Jiji Press)--Japanese economic revitalization minister Toshimitsu Motegi has signaled Tokyo's readiness to call on the United States to open its industrial goods market further, in bilateral trade pact talks expected to start in late January.

If the United States prods Japan to liberalize its farm products market at the same level as the Trans-Pacific Partnership multilateral free trade agreement, Japan will demand that the United States take "corresponding steps" for industrial goods, he said in a recent interview with Jiji Press.

"I hope to achieve an early win-win outcome," Motegi also said.

Before the United States withdrew from the TPP in early 2017, Japan had agreed to reduce or eliminate tariffs on a wide range of agricultural, forestry and fisheries products, including U.S. beef and pork. The United States also had promised to eventually scrap tariffs on industrial products, including Japanese automobiles.

In the Japan-U.S. trade talks, greater political decisions may become necessary compared with the TPP and other trade deals, Motegi said.

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Jiji Press