(photo credit: JPOST STAFF)
Japan and the European Union are on the cusp of a wide-ranging free trade agreement that could help blunt the forces of protectionism sparked by US President Donald Trump's trade policies.
EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom said she was "quite confident" that a broad agreement can be announced at a summit on July 6 with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe as both sides finalize the reduction of tariffs on autos and agricultural goods.
Clinching a deal would offer Japan and Europe an important political victory and could raise questions about the US government's influence on the agenda for the global economy.
"You can do good, fair, transparent and sustainable trade agreements where you win and I win, and not the American view, which seems to be, 'You lose and I win,'" Malmstrom told reporters.