Japan, U.S. Outline Key Issues in Preparation for Japan’s Entry into TPP Talks

Announcing today that they had reached agreement with the United States in preliminary talks on Japan’s participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) negotiations, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and TPP Minister Akira Amari outlined the following key points:
  • While participating in TPP, the two countries will pursue negotiations on a separate track on a list of non-tariff barriers, including sanitary and phytosanitary issues as well as outstanding issues in the insurance and investment sectors.
  • Reductions in the duty for automobiles imported into the United States from Japan will take place at a slower pace than what was established in the Korea-U.S. FTA. The two countries will also develop details on a program to harmonize safety standards.
  • The two countries again recognized the existence of sensitive issues in agricultural products in Japan and in industrial products in the United States.
  • After reaching this preliminary agreement with the United States, Japan intends to gain support for its participation in the TPP talks from Australia, New Zealand, Canada and Peru at the earliest possible date.

Japan and the United States also issued a joint statement, and a news release was issued by Acting U.S. Trade Representative Demetrios Marantis. More details are also available from Jiji Press.

USTR is expected to notify Congress in the coming days of its intention to open negotiations with Japan under the TPP. Congress will have 90 days to consult with the Administration prior to the formal initiation of negotiations.