Japan trade deal clears key hurdle

Japanese lawmakers have taken the next step toward finalizing a trade deal with the U.S.

Bloomberg reports the Lower House of Parliament approved the pact that includes greater access for American ag products.

Minnesota Pork Board president JoDee Haala says in terms of value, Japan is the number market for U.S. pork exports.

“There’s been a lot of really good work that’s been done, and we’re really happy to see Japan come around for us beginning in January. So that’ll be a really good lift in the pork sector.”

With the trade deal passing Japan’s Lower House, it now heads to the Upper House where it’s expected to win passage because of Prime Minister Abe’s coalition majority.

Under terms of the current agreement, Japan is set to lower or abolish tariffs on U.S. beef, pork, wheat and wine, while maintaining protection for its rice farmers.

*Haala made her comments on Brownfield affiliate KNUJ’s Women in Agriculture program Monday*

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