U.S. and Japan agree in principle to bilateral trade deal

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U.S. President Donald Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced a bilateral trade agreement “in principle” between the two nations. On the sidelines of the Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, the leaders and their surrogates told reporters the deal focuses on agriculture, industrial tariffs, and digital trade. Both nations indicated the agreement will be signed during the United Nations General Assembly meeting in September.

Bilateral trade discussions began between the U.S. and Japan last September following President Trump’s threat to impose tariffs on Japanese auto imports. This agreement appears to dampen those tariff concerns, for the time being, as well as open new agricultural markets to U.S. farmers. As a key tenant of the agreement, President Trump said Japan would purchase large quantities of U.S. wheat and corn.

Additionally, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lightizer said the proposed deal would open markets to $7 billion of American products including ethanol, beef, pork, and dairy products, and wine. He continued on to indicate that tariffs on some Japanese industrial products would be reduced and that the agreement included a clause on e-commerce.

If you have any further questions, please reach out to Bill Carey, Import Compliance Manager, at bcarey@tbgfs.com or (800) 493-9444.

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