Trade deal with Japan to boost EU meat exports

Trade deal with Japan to boost EU meat exports

The deal will move away the scrapping barriers for EU farming products and in return the European Union will open its market to the Japanese car industry. Despite top EU politicians welcoming the deal, there is opposition to so-called investment courts which opponents argue are undemocratic and will be a boon for multinationals. The EU and Japanese economies combined account for more than a quarter of global output, making the deal one of the biggest trade pacts ever attempted. With the deal, the EU is seeking access to one of the world’s richest markets while Japan hopes to jump-start an economy that has struggled to find solid growth for more than decade.

Japan is a highly valuable export market for European farmers and food producers. With annual exports worth over €5.7 billion, Japan is already the EU's fourth biggest market for agricultural exports. Over time around 85% of EU agri-food products (in tariff lines) will be allowed to enter Japan entirely duty-free. This corresponds to 87% of current agri-food exports by value. The agreement will eliminate or sharply reduce duties on agricultural products in which the EU has a major export interest, such as pork, the EU's main agricultural export to Japan, ensuring duty-free trade with processed pork meat and almost duty-free trade for fresh pork meat exports. Tariffs on beef will be cut from 38.5% to 9% over 15 years for a significant volume of beef products.