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Japan-U.K. post-Brexit trade deal takes effect

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A post-Brexit trade deal between Japan and the United Kingdom came into force Friday, ensuring business continuity and strengthening the bilateral relationship as London seeks to join the larger Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade agreement.

The two countries signed the FTA in October as the existing Japan-European Union trade pact ceased to cover the United Kingdom on Thursday, the end of the transition period following the country’s exit from the European Union in January 2020.

The lack of an agreement could have resulted in impositions of higher tariffs by both countries on bilateral trade.

The deal largely duplicates the Japan-EU FTA, including gradual elimination of British tariffs on Japanese cars by 2026 and immediate removal of its duties on most Japanese agricultural goods such as beef and tea.






Jan 01

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga on Friday said the government will do everything in its power to bring the novel coronavirus under control and pledged to push forward with preparations for this summer’s Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics. (Japan Times)

Jan 01

A post-Brexit trade deal between Japan and the United Kingdom came into force Friday, ensuring business continuity and strengthening the bilateral relationship as London seeks to join the larger Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade agreement.
(Kyodo)

Dec 30

Tokyo’s coronavirus outbreak is severe and could explode in the coming days just as Japan begins its New Year’s holiday period, in which millions of people usually move around the country, the city’s governor said on Wednesday.
(Japan Today)

Dec 29

A fresh ban on foreign visitors announced less than a week before New Year’s Day was a telling sign of the high pressure Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga faces as he grapples with a deeply unhappy public that has sent his approval ratings tanking. (Nikkei)

Dec 29

Japan’s former transport minister Hata Yuichiro, who died on Sunday at the age of 53, has become the first incumbent lawmaker in the country to die of the coronavirus.
(NHK)

Dec 27

A Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker attended a drinking party Friday with about 30 people in Toyama, his office said Saturday, despite authorities’ warnings to refrain from dining in large groups to prevent the further spread of the coronavirus. (Japan Times)

Dec 26

The Japanese government faces both technical and policy challenges in reaching the goals it has set to achieve net-zero emission of greenhouse gases by 2050.
(NHK)

Dec 26

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga on Friday said the country is prepared to introduce vaccines and is looking at February as a key decision-making point. (Nikkei)

Dec 26

Japan’s prime minister said his administration will consider revising the law so that subsidies and penalties can be used in combination to enforce shorter business hours at bars and restaurants.
(NHK)

Dec 25

Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Friday corrected statements he had made in the Diet, apologizing for what he said were mistakes regarding a political funding scandal that has also cast a pall over the current prime minister, Yoshihide Suga.
(Japan Today)

Dec 25

Former Japanese premier Shinzo Abe will not be charged over allegations his political funding group illegally subsidised parties for hundreds of voters in a case casting a shadow over the current prime minister. (straitstimes.com)

Dec 23

US President Donald Trump’s nomination for Washington’s next ambassador to Japan is likely to be scrapped now that the current session of Congress is all but over. (NHK)

Dec 23

The Maritime Self-Defense Force said Tuesday eight senior officials, including its top two officers, have tested positive for the novel coronavirus and will be working remotely under quarantine. (Japan Times)

Dec 22

Japan’s struggle to contain the coronavirus ahead of the holiday season has prompted some local leaders to ask residents to embrace a more extreme precaution: wearing masks at home. (Bloomberg)

Dec 22

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga reiterated there was no need for Japan to call a national state of emergency, even as healthcare authorities declared their own state of emergency for the medical system as coronavirus infection rates continue to rise. (Reuters)

Dec 22

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s government approved a ninth consecutive rise in military spending on Monday, to fund the development of an advanced stealth fighter and longer-range anti-ship missile to counter China’s growing military power. (aljazeera.com)

Dec 20

Both governments have based their strategies on voluntarism, self-responsibility, and perhaps most importantly, the exceptional nature of their populations, says an observer. (channelnewsasia.com)

Dec 18

Japan’s decision to build two new naval vessels equipped with Aegis missile interceptors — an alternative to a scrapped plan to deploy a land-based system — could prompt further armament by potential adversaries, security experts have warned. (Japan Times)

Dec 18

The mayor of Unnan City in Shimane Prefecture has been arrested on suspicion of assaulting a female nurse while he was in hospital.
(Japan Today)

Dec 17

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga on Wednesday voiced regret over a recent year-end dinner where he appeared to flout social-distancing guidelines designed to help halt the virus’s spread as his government faces flak for its handling of the coronavirus response. (Japan Times)



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