Editor's Сhoice
November 19, 2019
© Photo: The White House

Abe may have outmaneuvered an in-a-hurry Trump with their FTA, but looking forward, risks remain high

William PESEK

In an anxiously awaited speech on his China trade war this week, US President Donald Trump spent a surprising amount of time talking about – well, Japan.

Then there was his self-congratulatory talk of how he “struck a deal, which is historic, with Japan.” Trump told the Economic Club of New York on Nov. 12 that “that deal was signed, and it’s a great deal but it’s only Phase One of the Japan deal, too.”

There are two problems with these remarks.

One, the US-Japan free-trade agreement is not gaining traction for full ratification in Japan’s parliament. Two, Trump is likely to find that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government will be less pliant the second time around.

On the slow track

The views of individual contributors do not necessarily represent those of the Strategic Culture Foundation.
Tokyo’s Trumpian Trade Troubles

Abe may have outmaneuvered an in-a-hurry Trump with their FTA, but looking forward, risks remain high

William PESEK

In an anxiously awaited speech on his China trade war this week, US President Donald Trump spent a surprising amount of time talking about – well, Japan.

Then there was his self-congratulatory talk of how he “struck a deal, which is historic, with Japan.” Trump told the Economic Club of New York on Nov. 12 that “that deal was signed, and it’s a great deal but it’s only Phase One of the Japan deal, too.”

There are two problems with these remarks.

One, the US-Japan free-trade agreement is not gaining traction for full ratification in Japan’s parliament. Two, Trump is likely to find that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government will be less pliant the second time around.

On the slow track