Unic Press UK: During the 25th Edition of the EU-Japan Summit that was held on Tuesday, the European Union (EU) and Japan signed two major agreements – the EU-Japan Free Trade Agreement and the EU-Japan Strategic Partnership Agreement.
The Strategic Partnership Agreement serves to improve cooperation between the two parties on a wide range of issues, such as, security and defense, energy and climate, and people-to-people exchanges.
The Free Trade Agreement creates a trade zone covering 600 million people and nearly a third of global GDP and will remove 99% of tariffs paid by EU companies exporting to Japan.
“Once fully implemented, the free trade agreement will remove most of the duties that EU companies pay annually to export to Japan. It will also eliminate several regulatory barriers,” the EU said Tuesday in a press statement on its website.
In a joint statement, the leaders of the EU – represented by President Donald Tusk of the European Council and President Jean-Claude Juncker of the European Commission – and Japan Prime Minister Shinzō Abe, said:
“Today marks a historic step as we celebrate the signing of a highly ambitious trade agreement between two of the world’s largest economies. In giving full effect to this agreement, the EU and Japan are sending a powerful message to promote free, fair and rules-based trade, and against protectionism. The Economic Partnership Agreement demonstrates to the world the firm political will of the EU and Japan to keep the flag of free trade waving high and powerfully advance free trade. Moreover, the Agreement will be the model of high standard, free, open and fair trade and investment rules in the 21st century. The Agreement will also deliver sustainable and inclusive economic growth and spur job creation. The Agreement demonstrates to the world – and to our citizens – that free, fair and rules-based trade remains an important tool to promote prosperity in our societies and globally. Furthermore, the EU and Japan will continue their negotiations on investment rules”