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Japan, EU Conclude EPA Talks

Tokyo, Dec. 8 (Jiji Press)—Japan and the European Union said Friday that they have concluded talks on an economic partnership agreement, a deal that will create a huge free trade zone encompassing some 30% of global gross domestic product. The two sides agreed to exclude investment protection standards and investment protection dispute resolution, the most challenging issues in the negotiations…

Japan to Remove Effective Tariff on Wheat for Pasta

Tokyo, Nov. 16 (Jiji Press)—Japan's government and ruling bloc are considering eliminating the country's effective tariff on imported wheat used to make flour for pasta, in preparation for the effectuation of its economic partnership agreement with the European Union, it was learned Thursday. With Japan's tariff on pasta from EU countries set to be removed in the eleventh year after the free tr…

Japan, EU Reach Broad Accord in Trade Talks (News)

Brussels, July 5 (Jiji Press)—Japan and the European Union reached a broad accord in their four-year-old trade negotiations on Wednesday, set to create a free trade zone that covers 30% of trade around the globe. Japanese Foreign Minister Kishida Fumio and European Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmstroem, meeting in Brussels, resolved outstanding issues of the EPA negotiations launched in Apr…

Timeline for April 2014

Consumption tax goes up for the first time in 17 years; Obokata Haruko faces her critics after the STAP cell controversy; and Japan welcomes Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott and US President Barack Obama. A look back at some of the top stories from April 2014.

TPP Negotiations and Japan

Negotiations are now underway for the Trans-Pacific Partnership, with an eye to concluding the free-trade agreement before the end of 2013. Japan only formally joined the negotiations at the final stage. Attention is focused on how well the country will be able to steer TPP rules in a direction that protects its national interests.

Shifting Definitions of “East Asia” and Regional CooperationMiyagi Taizō

East Asia is a diverse area encompassing the ASEAN members as well as Japan and its Northeast Asian neighbors, China and Korea. Asia specialist Miyagi Taizō examines the history of cooperation in the region and the issues it now faces.

Foreign Nurses and Care Workers in Japan: Reform NeededWakisaka Noriyuki

To help deal with its rapidly aging population, Japan has been admitting nurses and care workers from other Asian countries since 2008. The program has run into a number of problems, and a sweeping overhaul is required.

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