While President Trump talks tough on trade, Europe and Japan are getting on with business.
Negotiators from the European Union and Japan say they’re close to striking a major free trade agreement that could jump-start talks for other potential deals.
“An ambitious EU-Japan deal would send a powerful signal to the rest of the world that two of the largest economies are resisting protectionism, in favor of openness, of trade and investment,” Cecilia Malmstrom, the EU’s top trade official, said this week.
The EU and Japan, which together account for more than a quarter of the global economy, traded roughly $140 billion of goods last year, according to EU data. The deal they are negotiating now would help boost that number.
Japan wants to remove high EU tariffs on products such as cars and electronics, and is also seeking lower regulatory hurdles for Japanese companies doing business in Europe. The EU is pushing for improved market access for agricultural products and lower tariffs on food products such as cheese, pasta, pork and wine.
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