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Japan braces for enhanced trade pressure by Trump administration

Yomiuri took up a teleconference on Wednesday between USTR Lighthizer and Trade Minister Seko, during which the U.S. official reportedly did not reply positively to Japan’s renewed request that its metals be exempted from the tariffs. The daily wrote that following the recent formal agreement between the U.S. and South Korea to update the KORUS FTA, the Japanese government is increasingly wary of the Trump administration’s trade policy of applying greater pressure on Tokyo to enter bilateral free trade talks.

 

Meanwhile, Yomiuri highlighted press remarks on Thursday by Chairman Okada of the Japan Aluminum Association, who criticized the U.S. metal tariffs by saying: “They will bring a radical change to the metal market and have an adverse effect on the world economy.” The businessman reportedly emphasized that U.S. aluminum consumers will be forced to pay higher prices since they will probably not be able to find alternative supplies as high-quality products account for the bulk of U.S.-bound aluminum from Japan. 

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