(Asahi: July 27, 2015 – p. 2)
It was learned that in its TPP negotiations with the U.S., Japan is contemplating reducing its current tariff on high grade pork of 4.3% to 2.2% immediately after the TPP agreement takes effect, and abolishing the tariff altogether over 10 years. It is making this concession to the U.S. based on the assessment that tariff elimination will only have a limited impact on imports.
The current tariff on pork imports is divided into three levels based on price range. The actual tariff on high grade pork is mostly about 2 yen per 100 grams, so the elimination of tariff will have little impact on prices. Furthermore, most pork imports at present are near the borderline of the variety with the lowest tariff. With the elimination of tariff for high grade pork, the merits of importing at this price range will be more pronounced, and this will help maintain the present differential tariff system. The government reckons that this will have practically no impact on imports.