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Tokyo to host 2-day TPP talks from Monday: minister

  • January 19, 2018
  • , Kyodo News , 11:567 a.m.
  • English Press

TOKYO — Japanese economy minister Toshimitsu Motegi said Friday that Tokyo will host a two-day conference of top negotiators of the remaining 11 signatories to the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade deal from next Monday.


With the aim of signing a new TPP pact in March without the United States, which has pulled out, Japan hopes to discuss remaining challenges including Canada’s concerns about its cultural goods and services.


Motegi, Japanese minister in charge of TPP negotiations, told reporters, “The negotiations have entered the final phase. I hope to see progress toward the signing and effectuation of the deal.”


The 11 TPP countries — Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam — agreed on core elements of the pact in November but left some matters for further negotiation.


Canada has been opposed to a fast implementation of the TPP in its current form and has demanded an exception to protect its French-speaking culture.


But other countries are reluctant to accept the request, arguing that it would lead to alteration of the deal.


After U.S. President Donald Trump pulled the world’s biggest economy from the TPP in January last year, saying the multilateral pact would hurt American jobs, Japan had been eager to clinch an accord with the remaining 11 signatories.

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