November 30, 2012

JAMA Comments on Japan-EU Free Trade Agreement Talks

Akio Toyoda, Chairman, Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association, Inc.

JAMA warmly welcomes the decision, reached at the meeting of the Council of the European Union on November 29, by the EU’s 27 member states to grant negotiation authority to the European Commission in talks to be launched on an envisaged EU-Japan free trade agreement, or FTA.  At this juncture, we wish to express our profound esteem and appreciation to all the officials in both the Japanese and European governments who have devoted extensive time and effort to bringing the FTA discussion process to its current stage.

Acting on the principle of “competition and cooperation,” Japan’s motor industry has, over many years, cultivated an ever-growing number of fruitful partnerships with European automobile manufacturers, famed for their groundbreaking histories and business track records.  We are convinced that an EU-Japan FTA will provide a key impetus in promoting robust trade, investment and industrial cooperation between the two sides, thereby also fuelling growth and expansion of the automobile industries in both Japan and Europe.

JAMA therefore endorses sustained efforts by the Japanese government to start Japan-Europe negotiations of a FTA and to reach consensus on such an agreement as early as possible.

In that spirit, the Japanese automobile industry intends to do everything in its capacity to advance the dialogue in this regard at the industry level, and stands ready to firmly support the efforts of the Japanese government in this initiative.