Statement by Minister Kajiyama on the agreement in principle on the Japan-UK Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement
September 11, 2020
- On September 11, 2020, Japan and the UK reached an agreement in principle on the Japan-UK Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement, after beginning negotiations in June 2020.
- The UK has been an important base for production and sales in Europe for Japan’s business sector. Approximately 1,000 Japanese companies operate business in the UK, building a close supply chain between Japan, the UK and the EU. Given that the Japan-EU EPA will cease to apply to trade and investment between Japan and the UK after the transition period of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU, it is very important to ensure business continuity with the new agreement.
- This agreement will maintain the high-level liberalization of tariffs on industrial goods of the Japan-EU EPA and further improve market access for some items such as railway rolling stocks and auto parts. Japan and the UK also agreed on high-level rules such as the “data free flow” and the “prohibition of requirements on location of computing facilities,” as well as the many free and fair rules realized under the Japan-EU Agreement..
- It is important to reach such a comprehensive and high-level agreement given the current circumstances in which trade and investment have declined worldwide and protectionism is spreading under the COVID-19 pandemic. This agreement shows our strong will to continue supporting free trade. Keeping in mind the end of the transition period under the EU-UK withdrawal agreement, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry will continue its utmost efforts to achieve the earliest signing and entry into force of this agreement.
Divisions in ChargeEconomic Partnership Division, Trade Policy Bureau