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Japan and U.S. to enter trade talks

Staff Writer |
Japan agreed with the United States on Wednesday to start negotiations for a bilateral trade agreement while avoiding higher U.S. tariffs on Japanese auto exports that Tokyo feared would have a devastating impact on the economy.

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The start of bilateral negotiations to lower tariffs signals a major concession by Japan to U.S. President Donald Trump as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has preferred a multilateral approach to address trade issues.

The agreement was reached in a meeting between Abe and Trump, who has taken issue with the huge U.S. trade deficit with Japan and called for “reciprocal” trade.

“The agreement today will create a win-win economic relationship through the promotion of trade,” Abe told a news conference in New York where he attended the U.N. General Assembly.

Trump, for his part, said he is “happy” about the agreement.

“We’ve agreed today to start trade negotiations between the United States and Japan,” Trump said.

“This was something that for various reasons over the years Japan was unwilling to do and now they are willing to do. So we’re very happy about that, and I’m sure that we will come to a satisfactory conclusion, and if we don’t, ohhhhhh,” Trump said.

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