What Happened: Japan and the United States have agreed on a framework for a trade agreement that will reportedly leave U.S. tariffs on Japanese automotive imports in place, while Tokyo will lower its duties on beef and pork imports from the United States, Reuters reported Aug. 23. According to Japanese Economy Minister Toshimitsu Motegi, working-level talks between both sides will continue to work out the details of the agreement.
Why It Matters: If confirmed, the agreement would give U.S. President Donald Trump a political victory as he's been seeking to gain greater access for U.S. agricultural products to Japanese markets.
Background: The United States and Japan entered bilateral talks toward reaching a trade deal in late 2018 after Washington threatened to impose steep tariffs on automotive imports from Japan.
- The Contradictory Nature of U.S.-Japan Relations (May 30, 2019)
- Agriculture Is Still Vital to U.S. Trade Talks — For Now (May 2, 2019)
- Japan, U.S.: Industrial Giants Take the Slow Road to a Trade Deal (April 12, 2019)