The United States has sounded out some of the other countries involved in Pacific Rim free trade negotiations about holding the next ministerial gathering in late September on the margins of a session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, negotiation sources said Tuesday.
Separately, Japan and the United States will resume bilateral talks on auto trade issues under the 12-country Trans-Pacific Partnership trade initiative in Washington from Wednesday, the Japanese Foreign Ministry said.
The moves follow a ministerial meeting of all 12 TPP countries in Hawaii in late July at which they failed to secure a broad agreement.
During the negotiations in Washington through Friday, Japan is also expected to hold working-level talks with Canada and Mexico as well. There could also be multilateral sessions among the four countries, according to a Foreign Ministry official.
Akira Amari, Japan’s minister in charge of TPP negotiations, has expressed hope that the next ministerial meeting will be held by the end of September, saying the TPP talks may be halted if a deal cannot be reached before a general election in Canada slated for October.
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