Jiji Press | September 26, 2013
Japan, EU to speed up trade talks
Jiji Press BRUSSELS (Jiji Press)—Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Toshimitsu Motegi and European Union Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht agreed at a meeting in Brussels on Tuesday that Japan and the EU should accelerate their free trade talks.
They agreed both sides will work to announce at a bilateral summit in Tokyo in November that they will aim for an early conclusion of the negotiations on their economic partnership agreement.
Japan and the EU have set no specific deadline for their free trade talks. Meanwhile, Japan, the United States and other countries involved in Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade talks aim to reach a broad agreement in October, and the EU and the United States are targeting the second half of 2014 for concluding their Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership talks.
Japan and the EU, which began their negotiations in April, plan to hold the third round of the talks Oct. 21-25.
Motegi and De Gucht agreed the two sides will soon present specific proposals on their removal of tariffs and nontariff barriers.
In the face of the South Korea-EU free trade pact, which already has come into effect, Japan is eager to strike a deal with the EU.