Japan, U.S. to Hold Ministerial Session on Trade before Summit


Tokyo, May 21 (Jiji Press)--Japan and the United States are considering holding a ministerial session under their trade negotiation framework in Tokyo this weekend, ahead of a bilateral summit next week, informed sources said Tuesday.

Japanese economic revitalization minister Toshimitsu Motegi and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer are expected to discuss tariff cuts and elimination for agricultural products, automobiles and other goods, the sources said.

This will be the second ministerial session under the bilateral trade negotiations. The first session took place last month. Lighthizer may arrive in Japan as early as Friday, the sources said.

In a speech in Tokyo on Tuesday, U.S. Ambassador to Japan William Hagerty expressed hopes that "significant progress" will be made in the trade talks through the ministerial session, as well as the summit between Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump, slated for Monday.

Trump is set to visit Japan for four days from Saturday as the first state guest since Japan's new Emperor Naruhito assumed the throne at the start of this month.

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Jiji Press