The EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström met Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida in Tokyo on June 30th, discussing a free trade agreement. Ms Malmström said that a broad agreement could be ready for signing on Thursday, July 6th. Finnish Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Kai Mykkänen believes there is a real chance that a political consensus about the agreement will be reached by then. He says the sensitive issues in the overall agreement relate to the access of European food products on the Japanese market and to the concessions the EU will make to customs duties for cars imported from Japan. Mr Mykkänen estimates that the European market opening up to Japanese competitors would not create any significant challenges for Finland and notes that the trade agreement could increase Finland’s exports of lumber, health technology and food products to Japan.
Journalist: Saara Tunturi
Main source: Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Kai Mykkänen