U.S.-Japan make progress on potential trade deal

The U.S. and Japan could reach a bilateral trade deal next month. U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer met with Japanese officials last week to continue trade negotiations and agreed to meet again later this month.

Dave Salmonsen, senior director of congressional relations with American Farm Bureau, says AFBF is pleased with this positive development.

“There was some positive news coming out of their meetings and both sides I think are liking to have a deal or something that can at least be signed by President Trump and Prime Minster Abe when they’re both in New York at the end of September for the UN General Assembly meeting,” he says.  

He says the two countries continue to work on a trade deal involving agriculture and automobiles

 “What the U.S. wants and what Japan has said they will agree to is to be where we were in the Trans Pacific Partnership with Japan where they had reduced tariffs on a lot of their products,” he says.

Salmonsen says it will include a “catch up” provision that will allow the U.S. to take advantage of lower tariffs rates available to countries in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

President Trump has threatened to impose a 25 percent tariff on autos and auto parts if a deal isn’t reached by November.

Salmonsen says there is incentive for both countries to reach an agreement.

Audio: Dave Salmonsen, American Farm Bureau

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