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EU-Japan Summit

6 July 2017

 

The 24th EU-Japan summit on 6 July was one of the most productive with leaders agreeing the broad outlines of an FTA and an updated strategic partnership agreement.

President Tusk said that the two sides were united by their shared values of democracy and the rule of law as well as support for a rules-based international order. The highly ambitious and comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement was a signal that the two sides favoured free and fair trade instead of protectionism.

Tusk also took swipe at Brexiteers who claimed it as not possible to do trade deals with the EU. ‘Today we have shown that this is not true. The EU is more and more engaged globally. And ahead of the EU are negotiations with Mercosur countries, Mexico, New Zealand, Australia and others.’

The updated strategic partnership agreement allows the two sides to cooperate on global and regional security issues.

On North Korea, both sides agreed to support calls for an early UNSC resolution aimed at further tightening sanctions on the DPRK.

The FTA opens the door for trading in goods without tariff barriers between two of the world's biggest economies. Two of the most important sectors affected will be European agriculture, set to boost exports to Japan, and  Japanese cars, which will no longer face tariffs in the EU. Some of the technical details remain to be finalised and a final text may take several weeks to conclude.

Coming on the eve of the G20 summit in Hamburg the two agreements give a clear message to the rest of the world that the EU and Japan are firmly committed to free trade and the multilateral system