Reaching agreement in Japan-U.S. trade talks in August difficult: senior LDP official

TOKYO, June 7 – Hiroshi Moriyama, the ruling Liberal Democratic Party’s Diet affairs chief, said on June 6 that it is difficult for Japan and the United States to reach agreement in trade talks in August.

According to attendants of a meeting of heads of agricultural coop’s prefectural unions held in Tokyo, Moriyama, in charge of economic agreements as the chairman of the party’s headquarters for the TPP, Japan-EU EPA and the Japan-U.S. TAG, said in a speech that it will still take time to conduct working-level negotiations.

“We can’t possibly (reach a deal) in August,” he said.

In May during his visit to Tokyo, U.S. President Donald Trump said: “I think we will be announcing some things probably in August that will be very good for both countries.”

Toru Nakaya, head of the Central Union of Agricultural Cooperatives (JA-ZENCHU), called on the Japanese government “to remain determined to negotiate based on the Japan-U.S. joint statement” released in September last year following a meeting between Trump and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe which states that access to Japan’s agricultural markets should not go beyond existing economic partnership agreements.

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