Japan, US Set Plans for Talks on Resolving Tariffs Dispute

The Associated Press

U.S. Trade Representative Katharine Tai and Japan’s trade and industry minister agreed Wednesday to work to resolve a dispute over American tariffs on steel and aluminum, Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said.

Tai and Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Koichi Hagiuda met Wednesday for talks that followed a visit earlier in the week by Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo.

The two U.S. envoys have been visiting the region in a first obvious push by President Joe Biden’s administration to soothe frictions left over from Donald Trump’s days in office. The effort comes as prices for steel have surged as economies shift into high gear after slowing during the pandemic.

It also comes as major economies double down on trying to curb excess output in both industries.

METI said in a statement that the two sides had confirmed plans for negotiations on resolving the tariffs issue and addressing global excess production capacity.

The two officials “also discussed the U.S.’s commitment to the Indo-Pacific region, addressing market-distorting measures,” and cooperation on preparing for ministerial level talks of the World Trade Organization, it said. Those talks are due to begin Nov. 30 in Geneva.

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