U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Thomas Donohue, meeting Friday with trade minister Yukio Edano in Tokyo, expressed hope that Japan will soon join the multilateral negotiations on creating the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
Donohue told Edano the chamber supports Japan joining the free-trade negotiations that currently involve nine countries, including the United States, according to a Japanese official.
Edano replied that the government will make a decision after domestic discussions and consultations with other countries “simmer down,” the official said.
The government declared its interest in joining the TPP talks last November and has since held preliminary talks with participating countries.
Donohue also stated the need to strengthen business relations between Japan and the U.S., especially in the energy field, suggesting support for Tokyo’s efforts to win approval from the U.S. government for importing liquefied natural gas from the country.
Donohue also held talks with Deputy Prime Minister Katsuya Okada and discussed ways to strengthen the bilateral economic relationship.