Tokyo, May 26 (Jiji Press)–Japan and other member countries of the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade agreement will hold an online ministerial meeting on June 2 to discuss Britain’s TPP membership application, Japan’s economic revitalization minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said Wednesday.
At the meeting, the ministers are seen deciding to start negotiations with Britain, sources familiar with the matter said.
Britain’s participation would create “a great potential,” Nishimura told a press conference, noting that it would mark “the first step toward expanding the TPP’s high-standard trade and investment rules beyond the Asia-Pacific region.”
This year, Japan chairs the TPP Commission, the highest decision-making body of the trade framework.
The current member countries are slated to examine whether Britain will be able to follow the TPP’s free trade rules, such as almost completely removing tariffs and banning subsidies to state-owned enterprises.
Britain filed for TPP membership in February.
China and South Korea have also shown their interest in joining the TPP.