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Japan to impose safeguard tariffs on frozen U.S. beef starting on Aug. 1

  • July 28, 2017
  • , NHK
  • JMH Summary

NHK reported that the GOJ announced today that it will invoke an import safeguard mechanism on frozen beef from the U.S. starting on Aug. 1. Finance Minister Aso told reporters that Japan will raise the levy on frozen beef from America in accordance with the law as the volume of imports of such products has exceeded the designated level. Japan will raise the levy from the current 38.5% to 50% through the end of March 2018. This will the first time in 14 years for Japan to invoke a safeguard measure. Aso stated that the mechanism will be invoked automatically based on WTO rules and that Japan will explain to the U.S. through their economic dialogue and other venues that the action is based on international trade rules. Agriculture Minister Yamamoto reiterated Aso’s statement, adding that Japan will provide the U.S. with explanations on the issue.


The U.S. Meat Export Federation released on Thursday a statement saying that the safeguard will not only have negative implications for U.S. beef producers, but will also have a significant impact on the Japanese food service industry. It added that it will be especially difficult for the “gyudon” beef bowl restaurants that rely heavily on American beef. The federation also stated that it will encourage the U.S. and Japanese governments to reach a mutually beneficial resolution to the issue.

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