NVO News | June 24, 2013
Japan, EU begin second free trade talks
TOKYO, Japan and the European Union (EU) began, here on Monday, the second round of negotiations on a bilateral free-trade pact aimed at stimulating economies on both sides.
At the meetings through July 3, the two sides are expected to discuss such areas as trade in goods and services, investment, intellectual property rights, non-tariff measures, government procurement, and other trade-related issues, the Japanese Foreign Ministry said.
Japan and EU leaders agreed earlier this year to launch the negotiations toward the deep and comprehensive free trade deal, which is expected to stimulate economies on both sides.
At the first round of negotiations on the Economic Partnership Agreement in the Belgium capital of Brussels in April, Japan and the EU discussed the scope and procedure of negotiations.
The EU is Japan’s third-largest trading partner after China and the US, while Japan is the 27-nation regional bloc’s second biggest trading partner in Asia, after China.
Together Japan and the EU account for more than one third of world gross domestic product (GDP). According to the EU, the free trade deal would raise EU’s GDP by 0.6-0.8 percent and result in growth and the creation of 400,000 jobs.
It is also expected that EU exports to Japan could increase by 32.7 percent, while Japanese exports to the EU would increase by 23.5 percent in light of the deal.
In addition, the second round of negotiations on a Japan-EU Strategic Partnership Agreement covering political and other cooperation will be held in Belgium, July 3-5. (KUNA)