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The USTR Japan Agreement: What You Need to Know

The United States Trade Representative (USTR) and Japan`s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) signed a trade agreement in October 2019, known as the USTR Japan Agreement. This agreement is significant for both countries, as it marks a major milestone in their economic relationship.

The USTR Japan Agreement is designed to promote fair and open trade between the United States and Japan. It covers a wide range of products and services, including agriculture, automobiles, digital trade, and intellectual property. Here`s what you need to know about this important trade agreement:

1. Increased Market Access for U.S. Agricultural Products

One of the key provisions of the USTR Japan Agreement is increased market access for U.S. agricultural products in Japan. Under the agreement, Japan will eliminate or reduce tariffs on a range of U.S. agricultural products, including beef, pork, wheat, dairy products, wine, and ethanol. This will make it easier for U.S. farmers and producers to export their goods to Japan and increase their competitiveness in the Japanese market.

2. Improved Access to Japan`s Auto Market

The USTR Japan Agreement also includes provisions that will improve access to Japan`s auto market for U.S. automakers. Japan has agreed to eliminate or reduce its tariffs on U.S. automobiles, trucks, and auto parts, making it easier and more affordable for U.S. automakers to sell their products in Japan. This is a major win for U.S. automakers, who have long faced barriers to entry in the Japanese market.

3. Strengthened Protections for Intellectual Property

The USTR Japan Agreement also includes provisions that will strengthen protections for intellectual property in both countries. This includes stronger copyright protection for digital music and movies, as well as increased protection for trade secrets and patents. This will help protect U.S. companies and individuals from intellectual property theft and infringement in Japan.

4. Enhanced Digital Trade Provisions

The USTR Japan Agreement also includes enhanced digital trade provisions, which will make it easier for U.S. companies to do business in Japan`s growing digital economy. This includes provisions that require Japan to allow cross-border data flows, as well as measures that will promote interoperability between U.S. and Japanese digital systems.


The USTR Japan Agreement is an important milestone in the economic relationship between the United States and Japan. By promoting fair and open trade between the two countries, this agreement will benefit both U.S. and Japanese businesses, workers, and consumers. If you`re a U.S. business owner, farmer, or producer, the USTR Japan Agreement could open up new opportunities for your products and services in the Japanese market. Be sure to stay up-to-date on the latest developments and take advantage of this new trade agreement.

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