Japan and EU continue to seek an early conclusion of EPA deal
Upon his visit to Germany for G20 foreign ministerial session, Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida reconfirmed with European Union Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom to conclude the deadlock Japan-EU EPA negotiations as early as possible. The on-going discussion, which begun in April 2013, was originally to reach an agreement in 2016 but carried over due to obstacles in agricultural products and automobiles. Japan and the EU need to push harder for a prompt and smooth conclusion since Germany and France will have elections this year, which may cause further complication of the negotiations. For more details, please check an article in the Japan Times linked below.