On October 16, 2018, the United States Trade Representative notified Congress of the Administration’s intention to enter into negotiations with Japan for a U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement. The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) is seeking public comments on a proposed U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement including U.S. interests and priorities, in order to develop U.S. negotiating positions. The Trade Policy Staff Committee (TPSC) invites interested parties to submit comments and/or oral testimony to assist USTR as it develops its negotiating objectives and positions for the agreement, including with regard to objectives identified in section 102 of the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015 (19 U.S.C. 4201). In particular, the TPSC invites interested parties to comment on issues including, but not limited to, the following:
a. General and product-specific negotiating objectives for the proposed agreement.
b. Relevant barriers to trade in goods and services between the United States and Japan that should be addressed in the negotiations.
c. Economic costs and benefits to U.S. producers and consumers of removal or reduction of tariffs and removal or reduction of non-tariff barriers on articles traded with Japan.
d. Treatment of specific goods (described by HTSUS numbers) under the proposed agreement, including comments on:
i. Product-specific import or export interests or barriers.
ii. Experience with particular measures that should be addressed in the negotiations.
iii. Ways to address export priorities and import sensitivities in the context of the proposed agreement.
e. Customs and trade facilitation issues that should be addressed in the negotiations.
f. Sanitary and phytosanitary measures and technical barriers to trade that should be addressed in the negotiations.
g. Other measures or practices that undermine fair market opportunities for U.S. businesses, workers, farmers, and ranchers that should be addressed in the negotiations.
Advocacy encourages small businesses to self-identify in their comments. Comments and requests to appear must be received by November 26th. The hearing will be held on December 10th.