(Nikkei: October 2, 2015 – p. 5)
By Takashi Nakano in Atlanta
The tariff on Japanese textile products imposed by the U.S. and other participating nations in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations is expected to be eliminated. This will come as a boost to exports of regional products such as towels produced in Imabari, Ehime Prefecture, and denim from Okayama Prefecture.
Textile products are an industrial sector governed by strict and detailed rules that constitute a separate chapter in the proposed TPP agreement. It is very likely that products using thread from China, a non-TPP member, or processed outside the TPP nations will not be eligible for tariff abolition. On the other hand, tariffs on exports of towels and jeans processed and manufactured in the TPP nations will be eliminated.
There are still a considerable number of textile products subject to high customs duties – up to 30% in the U.S. in some cases. The government reckons that tariff abolition will also help promote regional industries.