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Chairman Mimura's Comments regarding the Signing of the Japan-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA)

Chairman Mimura’s Comments regarding the Signing of the Japan-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA)

Jul 17, 2018

 

 I sincerely welcome the Japan-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) which was agreed upon by Mr. Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, Mr. Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, and Mr. Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, at the Japan-EU Summit held in Tokyo today. I would like to express my appreciation for the enthusiasm of the EU leaders who visited Japan during their busy schedules.

 While the protectionist stance of the United States takes shape and concerns grow over the negative influence on the world economy with regards to the impact of punitive tariffs between the United States and China, the signing of the EPA between Japan and the EU, which accounts for about 30% of the world’s GDP, has great significance in showing the value of free trade to the international community and the intention to lead the creation of global trade and investment rules.

 If the Japan-EU EPA comes into effect, tariffs on agricultural, forestry and fishery products, excluding rice, and on all industrial products will be eliminated. This will contribute to the expansion of business conducted by Japanese small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) which engage in the production, manufacturing and export of those products.

 For the sake of early effectuation, I hope the ratification procedures in Japan and the European Parliament proceed promptly, and also hope for the early conclusion of investment negotiations that are being held separately.

 The Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, in cooperation with local chambers of commerce and industry all across the nation, would like to promote the utilization of the Japan-EU and EPA, and facilitate the overseas expansion of SMEs by supporting the export of Japanese products and investment from Japan.