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  5. Future Directions for Addressing Reconstruction Measures Based on Results of Report Released by WTO Appellate Body

Future Directions for Addressing Reconstruction Measures Based on Results of Report Released by WTO Appellate Body

May 17, 2019

Joint Press Release with the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Reconstruction Agency and the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare

Based on the results of the report released by the WTO Appellate Body on April 12, 2019, concerning the import bans imposed by the ROK on marine products originating in Japan, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOF), the Reconstruction Agency, the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW) and the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) compiled future directions for developing an environment in which businesses involved in the marine industry in the areas affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake are able to keep their hope and engage in the fishery, processing and distribution industries. In developing this environment, these ministries and the agency will collaborate with each other while showing sympathy to such businesses involved in the marine industry that have been making efforts to reconstruct the affected areas.

1. Efforts for reviewing the strategies for lifting the ROK’s bans on imports from Japan and expanding exports of products from Japan

Encouraging certain countries to relax or eliminate their controls over Japanese food imports concerning radioactive substances

Twenty-three countries and regions are still imposing control measures on Japanese food imports concerning radioactive substances. The related ministries and agency will further closely collaborate and consolidate their efforts for encouraging these countries to further relax or eliminate such control measures, including efforts by high-level officials taking advantage of all meeting opportunities, such as G20 summit meetings and ministerial meetings, those by working-level officials making use of their meetings and those by overseas embassies.

In  particular, MAFF, MOF, MHLW, etc. will dramatically enhance efforts for encouraging (A) major countries and regions to which export amounts from Japan are large, (B) countries in the Southeast Asia region as neighbor countries of Japan, and (C) other countries in the Middle East, Africa and other regions to relax or eliminate their control measures. The level of such encouragement will depend on progress in meetings, current situations and other elements involving partner countries. (MAFF, MOF, MHLW, etc.)

Lifting the current export ban imposed on marine products originating in the Tohoku region, e.g., scallops and live oysters

Some types of scallops, live oysters and sea squirts originating in Aomori, Iwate or Miyazaki Prefecture are not allowed to be exported to the EU, the United States and several other countries. Concerning these products, MAFF and MHLW will conduct monitoring and other tests in certain marine areas by the end of 2019 and strive to lift the export ban. (MAFF and MHLW)

2. Efforts for supporting businesses in the marine industry in the affected areas that are suffering from unexpected business environments

Convening of exhibition and matchmaking meetings in large-city areas targeting businesses in the marine industry in the affected areas

Aiming to encourage businesses in the marine industry in the affected areas to revitalize and expand sales channels, MAFF will hold exhibition and matchmaking meetings in large-city areas, including the Tokyo Metropolitan Area, Kinki Area and Chukyo Area, taking advantage of the Project for Revitalization and Promoting Cultivation of Sales Channels of Marine Processing and Other Industries in the Affected Areas and other projects. (MAFF)

Supporting businesses involved in the aquaculture industry of sea squirts to shift their business to other types of aquaculture or fishery

Taking advantage of the Project for Supporting Businesses in the Fishery and Aquaculture Industries in Revitalizing their Sales” (so called “Ganbaru Project for Supporting Businesses in the Fishery Industry in Revitalizing their Sales), MAFF will support businesses involved in the aquaculture industry of sea squirts that have been suffering from difficulties in revitalizing sales channels to shift their business to other types of aquaculture or fishery business.

3. Thoroughly conducting efforts for removing negative effects on regional marine products

Calling public attention to the safety of marine products originating in the affected areas at restaurants popular among overseas visitors to Japan

As a new effort for supporting businesses in the marine product industry, MAFF will call public attention to the safety and deliciousness of marine products originating in the affected areas by supporting businesses in providing such products to overseas visitors to Japan and others. In parallel with this, it will convey the attractiveness of such products to the public through SNS and other means taking advantage of influencers. (MAFF)

Expanding supply channels for calling public attention to the attractiveness and safety of marine products originating in Fukushima Prefecture

MAFF will expand efforts for selling marine products from Fukushima Prefecture by installing permanent booths at large-scale mass retailers while explaining the safety and attractiveness of such products, and will expand supply channels targeting consuming areas of such products. (MAFF)

Call public attention to the attractiveness of providers of marine products in the affected areas using video.

MAFF will broadly call public attention to the safety and attractiveness of marine products originating in the affected areas by: making video clips that show the current situation and attractiveness of providers of such products, broadcasting such video clips at restaurants and large-scale mass retailers that provide such products so as to stimulate consumers’ willingness to buy such products; and by taking advantage of displays installed in train cars. (MAFF)

Conducting projects for conveying information on the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games as the Recovery and Reconstruction Games to a global audience

The Reconstruction Agency will call for participants from stakeholders of overseas embassies in Tokyo and hold a tour for visiting the affected areas. It will provide participants with opportunities to visit businesses in the aquaculture industry and relish fish and seafood. (Reconstruction Agency)

Utilizing and explaining foodstuffs originating in the affected areas at reception parties related to the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games

The Reconstruction Agency will make use of the opportunities of reception parties and other occasions involving the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games that the Tokyo Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government will hold targeting a global audience, provide marine products and other foodstuffs from the affected areas and convey the safety of such foodstuffs to participants. (Reconstruction Agency)

Conveying appropriate information to a global audience

MOF, MAFF and METI will convey information from overseas embassies of Japan and other organizations to authorities of local governments in respective countries and regions and will effectively convey information taking advantage of reception parties and other diplomacy occasions inside and outside Japan to the maximum extent possible. Moreover, they will also provide information on the safety of food products originating in the affected and other areas by inviting overseas influencers to Japan and convey news online on the safety of food products in multiple languages. (MOF, MAFF and METI)

4. Contact counters of the related ministries and agency

For information on the contact counters, see “Reference 3. Contact Counters of the Related Ministries and Agency” below.

Appendices:

Division in Charge