Japan and Mercosur, the four-nation Latin American common market, will hold the second regular meeting in Tokyo in mid-October with Uruguayan Foreign Minister Alvaro Ramos visiting here as this year’s Mercosur chairman.

Uruguayan Ambassador to Japan Zulma Guelman said during her visit Sept. 29 to The Japan Times that Ramos will be arriving in Tokyo on Oct. 12 for talks with his Japanese counterpart, Keizo Obuchi, and other Tokyo government officials from Oct. 13 through 15.

The first Japan-Mercosur meeting was held last year in Sao Paulo. Uruguay is this year’s coordinator of the common market, officially inaugurated in January 1995 along with Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay. The ambassador stressed the importance of Japan’s closer ties with Mercosur, as she said Japanese businesses’ investment in the common market will help their exports to Europe. The EU has concluded a cooperation agreement with Mercosur with the hope of forming a free-trade zone in the future.

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