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U.S. and Japanese in talks on autos, insurance and non-tariffs

Staff writer |
U.S. and Japanese officials began talks in Tokyo trying to resolve obstacles in forming a regional free trade block Trans-Pacific Partnership.

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Acting deputy U.S. Trade Representative Wendy Cutler is heading the U.S. delegation in talks that began on autos, insurance and non-tariff barriers. All of those are sensitive issues that will require compromise if the 12 countries want to meet the year-end deadline for a deal.

The U.S. is seeking unified standards for automotive and environmental safety and deregulation in insurance and investment. The talks are also expected to include discussion of royalties and conditions for bidding on public works projects.

"Japan and the United States have agreed to work together to further enhance economic growth," said Takeo Mori, an economy and diplomatic envoy who heads the Japanese delegation.

The two sides agreed earlier to begin negotiations on the issues as part of Japan's membership in Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations. Japan's entry into the negotiations took effect on July 23 and the Japan-US talks are being held parallel to the main trade pact negotiations.

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