WASHINGTON – The United States and Japan held the second round of meetings of the United States-Japan Partnership on Trade during the week of August 22, 2022. The U.S. delegation was led by Michael Beeman, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Japan, Korea and APEC Affairs, and Japan’s delegation was led by Namazu Hiroyuki, Director General, Economic Affairs Bureau, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Matsuo Takehiko, Director General, Trade Policy Bureau, Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry.
Launched during Ambassador Tai’s visit to Japan in November 2021, the Partnership on Trade aims to strengthen the United States-Japan trade relationship through a commitment to advance bilateral collaboration on trade-related topics and issues of common interest, as well as to secure regular, ongoing engagement on addressing bilateral trade issues.
On areas of common interest collaboration, the United States and Japan discussed specific initiatives and efforts in a range of areas, including:
- Labor – Discussions focused on the shared commitment of the United States and Japan to encourage best practices with respect to internationally-recognized worker rights, including through increasing predictability. Among other issues, both sides intend to engage in further discussions on eradicating forced labor and other practices of concern in global supply chains, consistent with international standards.
- Digital Economy – Discussions focused on continuing to coordinate efforts to respond to several third-country regulations that present concerns in light of our shared commitments to harnessing the opportunities of the digital economy in a way that supports the interests of users and providers.
- Deepening Collaboration– The United States and Japan shared proposals on potential new approaches in several areas to advance new areas of trade-related collaboration.
- Third-Country Issues – Both sides exchanged information on shared concerns about the non-market and trade-distorting practices of third countries and discussed concrete follow-up activities.
- Multilateral Cooperation – The United States and Japan coordinated to develop and advance robust agendas in trade-related multilateral fora, including in preparation for the upcoming 2023 U.S. host year for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum and the 2023 Japan host year for the G-7.
Bilateral trade issues were also discussed, including regulatory transparency, ensuring a level playing field for U.S. products and services such as standards-related issues, and increasing Japan’s use of ethanol.
The United States and Japan will engage in follow-up intersessional activities and look forward to the next round of Partnership meetings to advance these and other shared priorities.