The US signs a free trade agreement with Japan that will greatly aid US growers

October 8, 2019 – The United States and Japan signed a trade agreement yesterday that would open up markets to 7 billion dollars worth of US agricultural goods, once it is approved by the US Congress.

Japan-US-painted-handshake

President Trump described the deal, dubbed the new US–Japan Trade Agreement, as a huge victory for both countries, especially America’s farmers. The deal will grant American growers significantly more access to the Japanese market.

The deal’s full text has not been released and remains classified, but congressional aides, trade experts and industry groups briefed on it say that it offers worse access to Japan for some US agricultural goods than the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a now 11-country trade deal that Trump quit on his third day in office in 2017.

Japan is the third-largest agricultural market for US exporters, according to the US Trade Representative (USTR). In 2018, the United States exported 13 billion dollars worth of farm products to Japan, including corn, beef and beef products, pork and pork products, soybeans, and wheat.

The White House claims that over 90 percent of United States agricultural imports into Japan will be duty-free or receive preferential tariff access.

Alongside the agriculture deal, the US–Japan Digital Trade Agreement was also signed. There is 40 billion dollars worth of digital trade between both countries.

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