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USTR Invites Input on TPP Negotiating Objectives for Japan

Tuesday, May 07, 2013
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative is inviting public input on the negotiating positions the U.S. should take when Japan joins the Trans-Pacific Partnership talks this summer. USTR is also seeking comments on negotiations to address certain non-tariff measures that will be conducted bilaterally in parallel to the TPP negotiations.

Written comments are due no later than June 9. USTR will also hold a public hearing July 2 to gather additional input, and notifications of intent to testify at this hearing are due by June 9.

Comments and testimony may address the reduction or elimination of tariffs or NTMs on any articles provided for in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States that are products of Japan, any concession that should be sought by the U.S., or any other matter relevant to the inclusion of Japan in the TPP or the parallel bilateral negotiations. Comments are particularly sought on the following issues.

- general and product-specific negotiating objectives

- economic costs and benefits to U.S. producers and consumers of the removal of tariffs and removal or reduction of NTMs

- treatment of specific goods (described by HTSUS numbers) under the TPP, including product-specific import or export interests or barriers, experience with particular measures that should be addressed, and the approach to tariff negotiations, including recommended staging and ways to address export priorities and import sensitivities

- the adequacy of existing customs measures to ensure that qualifying imported goods from TPP countries, including Japan, receive preferential treatment, and appropriate rules of origin for goods entering the U.S. under the TPP

- existing sanitary and phytosanitary measures, technical barriers to trade, barriers to trade in services, electronic commerce and cross-border data flow issues, investment issues, competition-related matters, government procurement issues, environmental issues, labor issues and trade-related intellectual property rights issues that should be addressed

- how Japan’s participation might affect new approaches being pursued in the TPP talks that are designed to promote innovation and competitiveness, encourage new technologies and emerging economic sectors, increase the participation of small and medium-sized businesses in trade, and support the development of efficient production and supply chains that include U.S. firms

- the impact of Japan’s participation in the TPP negotiations on environmental protection and conservation, transparency, workers’ rights and protections, development and other issues

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