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Japan-Australia EPA to take effect Jan. 15

The governments of Japan and Australia have announced that their recently completed economic partnership agreement (EPA) will take effect Jan. 15, 2015. Because the fourth quarter of Japan’s 2014 fiscal year runs from Jan 1. through March 31, this means that the first round of tariff rate reductions will be in effect from Jan. 15 through the end of March. A second round of tariff rate reductions will take effect April 1 and will be in effect through March 31, 2016.

For frozen beef, the tariff rate will be reduced from 38.5 percent to 30.5 percent on Jan. 15, then drop to 28.5 percent on April 1.

For chilled beef, the tariff rate will be reduced from 38.5 percent to 32.5 percent on Jan. 15, then drop to 31.5 percent on April 1.

For more details on safeguard triggers and tariff rates for other Australian beef and pork products, please refer to this tariff rate schedule.

More details are also available in this news release from Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.