Beginning on Jan. 1, Japan will lower or eliminate tariffs on $7.2 billion worth of U.S. farm exports under a “mini” trade pact that received final approval in Japan’s parliament on Wednesday.
Japanese beef producers will be hit the hardest by their nation's agreement to reduce tariffs on U.S. food and agriculture products, according to an estimate by the government in Tokyo. The package calls for Japan to reduce or eliminate tariffs on $7.4 billion worth of U.S. ag exports beginning on Jan. 1.
U.S. farm groups celebrated anew on Monday Japan’s agreement to reduce or eliminate tariffs on $7.2 billion worth of American goods, including beef, pork, poultry, wheat, cheese, wine, and ethanol. President Trump used the ceremonial signing of the pact at the White House to urge congressional approval of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement.
U.S. farmers will gain broader access to Japanese consumers under an agreement signed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and President Trump on Wednesday in New York. The White House called the deal “a major win for our farmers, ranchers, and growers.”
An accord expected to boost U.S. farm exports to Japan may not be complete in time for signature by President Trump and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly this week. The so-called mini-deal would cover agriculture and digital trade but is being held up by Tokyo's request that the United States promise not to impose tariffs on cars imported from Japan.
When President Trump meets Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan on Wednesday, it should be a red-letter day for Trump's policy of bilateral, rather than multi-nation, trade negotiations. The two leaders are expected to approve a deal on agricultural and digital trade. U.S. food and ag exports could rise as a result.
Eleven months after initiating negotiations, President Trump notified Congress on Monday that he intends to sign a trade agreement with Japan in the coming weeks. The agreement is expected to put U.S. farmers on equal footing in trade with Japan in competition with the "TPP-11" trade bloc and the EU.
U.S. farm exports plunged by an abrupt 6 percent this year due to the Sino-U.S. trade war and a worldwide slowdown in economic growth, but they will rebound mildly in the year ahead, said the USDA on Thursday. However, the agency’s first forecast of exports in fiscal 2020 excluded the impact of a promised mutual escalation this fall of the trade war between China and the United States.
In 48-hour span, starting Friday, President Trump roiled global markets by Tweeting his intention to again raise tariffs on China and ordering U.S. companies out of the country, then appeared to backpedal, saying at the G7 summit he was having "second thoughts" about escalating the U.S.-Sino trade war. The weekend ended with a bit of potentially good news on trade, when Trump and Japan President Shinzo Abe announced an agreement "in principle" on a deal that would include Japan buying surplus corn from the U.S.
Japan's Ministry of Agriculture purchased $18 million worth of U.S. wheat last week, days after announcing it would not interrupt imports because of the discovery of GMO wheat in a fallow field in Washington State. The Japan Agricultural Times reported the ministry said on July 17 that it had adopted a new inspection method so there was no need to suspend purchases.