All national dailies carried editorials on the new U.S.-Japan trade agreement.
Yomiuri contended: “It is significant that the United States and Japan, which account for 30% of global GDP, will create a framework for promoting free trade…. We welcome the two nations’ efforts to find realistic points of common ground…. The agreement is probably the second best choice because although the deal is meaningful, it runs counter to the spirit of expanding fair and free trade rules multilaterally…. The United States should eliminate its auto tariffs in return to Japan’s concessions on farm trade.”
Nikkei wrote: “Although liberalization of trade of farm and industrial products will likely move forward to some extent, the agreement does not seem to offer an example for major nations. We hope that the United States and Japan will continue their negotiations to achieve a more comprehensive agreement with a high level of liberalization.”
Asahi asserted: “It is hard to accept Prime Minister Abe’s explanation that the agreement is a win-win deal…. It remains to be seen whether President Trump will actually move forward with the elimination of tariffs on auto imports, which constitutes a large portion of the U.S. trade deficit with Japan.”
Mainichi wrote: “Although Prime Minister Abe stressed that the deal is a win-win that will benefit both countries, the contents of the accord are far from such…. The Japanese government accepted the U.S. demands because President Trump hinted at the possibility of additional high tariffs on Japanese auto imports.”
Sankei wrote: “It is significant that the United States and Japan did not exacerbate their differences over trade when the global economy is in confusion over the U.S.-China trade friction…. There is no guarantee that President Trump will proactively agree to discuss auto tariffs, but it is necessary for Japan to strongly call for talks.”