According to the official press release of the European Commission, the EU and Japan officially launched negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement (FTA). The aim is for a comprehensive agreement in goods, services and investment eliminating tariffs, non-tariff barriers and covering other trade-related issues, such as public procurement, regulatory issues, competition, and sustainable development.
The FTA is expected to boost the European economy by 0.6% to 0.8 % of its GDP and would result in growth and the creation of 400,000 jobs. It is expected that EU exports to Japan could increase by 32.7%, while Japanese exports to the EU would increase by 23.5%.
The negotiations will be based on the outcome of a joint scoping exercise, which the EU and Japan completed in May 2012. Both parties demonstrated their willingness and capacity to commit to an ambitious trade liberalization agenda in goods, services and investment. The European Commission (EC) has also agreed with Japan on specific “road maps” for the removal of non-tariff barriers, as well as on the opening up of public procurement for Japan’s railways and urban transport market.
The first round of negotiations will be held in Brussels from 15 to 19 April 2013. We will report further development of the negotiations. Stay informed with RCL updates!