Japan’s LDP to submit proposals on farm export expansion

TOKYO, March 24 — Japan’s governing Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) has been drawing up a package of proposals to meet the government’s target of 1 trillion yen in annual agricultural exports by 2020.

The LDP’s committee that deals with agricultural exports held a meeting on March 23.

It brought stakeholders interested in exporting to the table to help the committee focus on the issues. That included Mitoku Co., a trading company specializing in bio products, and Maruyama Tea Products Corp., a Shizuoka-based tea maker.

During the meeting, agriculture ministry officials pointed out several key issues: ensuring that Japanese products are recognized for high safety standards; making supply chains work for Japanese producers and overseas consumers; and easing import restrictions against Japanese products.

Conditions related to residue monitoring systems also can effectively block export opportunities for Japanese agricultural exports to the market, they stressed.

The LDP’s committee plans to submit proposals to the government as early as May to influence the national budget for fiscal 2019.

Last year, Japan’s agricultural exports broke the 800 billion yen barrier for the first time, but at a slower pace than the government hoped for.

Japan needs a 10% annual growth rate in the next two years, if it wants to reach the 1 trillion yen export target.

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