TOKYO, Mar. 7 – Japan has set a new target for exports of agricultural, forestry and fishery products and foods at a council of Ministers on March 6, 2020. According to the announcement after the council, the country now plans to increase agricultural, forestry, and fishery exports to 5 trillion yen by 2030. It includes 3,510 billion yen for farm products, including processed food. As a midterm goal, the country is also committed to boost the export of agricultural, forestry, and fishery products to 2 trillion yen by 2025.
Yoshihide Suga, Chief Cabinet Secretary of Japan, instructed each minister “to have concrete discussions as soon as possible and work together more closely than ever” to achieve the 5-trillion goal, which is now positioned as the country’s New Basic Plan for Food, Agriculture and Rural Areas.
To ensure a broad product portfolio, Japan will shift its focus from rice to vegetables and fruits while increasing the production of wagyu beef. As for rice, it intends to widen the sales channel to overseas Japanese restaurants.
At a news conference after the cabinet meeting on the same day, Japan’s Farm Minister Taku Eto emphasized that boosting exports while the domestic market is shrinking would help the country to maintain or increase the size of cultivated land. Eto, as the head of the new export headquarters of Japan to be established in April this year, stressed the importance of eliminating sectionalism. Japan would focus on the smooth authorization of export facilities and the activities to ask other countries and regions to remove or loosen their bans on Japanese food import, he explained.
Chinese President Xi Jinping recently decided to postpone his visit to Japan scheduled in April. His decision will inevitably lead to a delay in ending bans on beef imports from Japan. However, according to Eto, “President Xi’s visit to Japan was postponed, but it never means that China will not resume the export.” The negotiation for the export resumption is still underway, he said.