Category Archives: Farm Policy

Agriculture Ministers decide in communique to take actions for food security, support smallholders

Berlin, Jan. 20 – The Berlin Agriculture Ministers’ Conference was held on January 18, 2020, in Berlin, Germany. Agricultural ministers representing nations and regions around the world adopted a communique that calls for actions to promote trade, strengthen agricultural production system, and support small-scale farmers to ensure global food security. The global leaders also confirmed to proactively introduce information-communication technology (ICT) and innovations in the agricultural sector and share information for controlling animal diseases such as African swine fever (ASF). The annual agricultural summit meetings have been held in Germany since 2009. Agricultural ministers and high government officials from 71 nations and regions, including Taku Eto from Japan, and representatives … Continue reading

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Japan’s National Tax Agency to open new export support office for sake FY2020 budget expanded to create new sales channel

TOKYO, Jan. 20 – The Japanese government is boosting the support for the export of Japanese sake, wine, and alcoholic beverages starting in fiscal 2020. The budget for the assistance will be lifted largely to accelerate the creation of new sales channels overseas, such as restaurants and retailers, through established local distributors, for example. The National Tax Agency of Japan will set up an export promotion office in July. The new office will have 18 dedicated officers who will handle negotiations with other countries for removing rules and limits on alcoholic products from Japan and establishing a system that can make the exports easier. The total value of sake exports … Continue reading

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Farm ministry’s official YouTube channel opens to show more about Japan’s agriculture

TOKYO, Jan. 8 – The farm ministry of Japan launched a new YouTube channel called Buzz Maff on January 7, 2020. The contents of Buzz Maff are created by ministry officials, who voluntarily gathered to plan, design, and create one streaming video a day for the online video sharing website. Its stories feature agricultural products and life in farming towns and villages. Its targets are not limited to young Japanese, and it aims to create a buzz among viewers including foreign nationals living in Japan. There are 14 teams of in-house creators, and some stories are already available on YouTube. “An ordinary sweet potato may look different after you’ve seen … Continue reading

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Japan’s fiscal budget exceeds 100 trillion yen two years in a row Agriculture and fishery related spending in fiscal 2020 to reach 2.3 trillion yen

TOKYO, Dec. 21 – Japan’s cabinet has approved a draft budget for fiscal 2020 on December 20, 2019. The general account budget for the next fiscal year starting in April topped 100 trillion for the second straight year and hit a record high of 102.66 trillion yen. Social security costs swelled due to the rise in medical expenses, while the medical cost is growing because of the aging population and the introduction of free preschool education program after the consumption tax hike. The budget also includes agricultural spending of 2.31 trillion yen, which is up 10 billion yen compared to fiscal 2019. It exceeded previous year’s expenditure for the second … Continue reading

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One year after TPP: Japan sees big surge in meat and fruits import, wariness prevailing ahead of US-Japan trade deal

TOKYO, Dec. 31 – One year has passed since the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) took effect on December 30, 2018. Under the 11-country trade pact, duties on certain products were reduced or eliminated. Its signatories, primarily meat and fruits producing countries, have aggressively expanded their access to Japan, and Japanese farmers were thrown into a market that is freer than ever before. Japan has also signed the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union (EU) and will sign the US-Japan trade deal on January 1, 2020. Marked wariness is prevailing among Japanese. -Canadian pork and beef: exports to Japan expanding “Japan has become the largest importer of Canadian products, … Continue reading

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