In Brief

Japan and EU strike free trade deal after four years of talks

Agreement sends anti-protectionist signal ahead of G20 summit in Germany

Japan and the EU have agreed on the outline of a free trade deal after four years of negotiations.

"At the heart of the deal is an agreement for the EU to open its market to the Japanese auto industry, with Tokyo in return scrapping barriers to EU farming products, especially dairy," says AFP.

Yesterday's announcement, which came on the eve of the G20 summit in Hamburg, has been seen as a clear rejection of protectionist trade policies touted by US President Donald Trump.

As Brexit negotiations get underway, the pact "will also show skeptics in the EU the benefits of staying in the grouping with access to inner and outer markets," the Japan Times reports.

But the BBC reports that few specific details are known and "a full, workable agreement may take some time".

It comes six months after Trump followed through on his campaign promise to pull the US out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade deal with Japan and ten other Pacific ring countries.

"Although some are saying that the time of isolationism is coming again, we are demonstrating that this is not the case," European Council President Donald Tusk told the BBC.

Recommended

Quiz of The Week: 14 - 20 May
Speculation is mounting over the publication date of Sue Gray’s Partygate report
Quizzes and puzzles

Quiz of The Week: 14 - 20 May

Nato’s renaissance: how the world’s most powerful military alliance has taken centre stage
Long table of men at Nato summit
In Depth

Nato’s renaissance: how the world’s most powerful military alliance has taken centre stage

Curtailing abortion rights: will Republicans rue their victory?
Students protest anti-abortion measures
Talking point

Curtailing abortion rights: will Republicans rue their victory?

How the Taliban is rolling back the freedoms of the past 20 years
A burqa-clad woman
In Brief

How the Taliban is rolling back the freedoms of the past 20 years

Popular articles

The mysterious Russian oligarch deaths
Vladimir Putin has previously deployed ‘extreme measures’ to crush opposition
Why we’re talking about . . .

The mysterious Russian oligarch deaths

Depp v. Heard: what the latest battle has revealed
Amber Heard
In Depth

Depp v. Heard: what the latest battle has revealed

Is Vladimir Putin seriously ill?
Vladimir Putin
Why we’re talking about . . .

Is Vladimir Putin seriously ill?

The Week Footer Banner