Japan and the United States each made their points known Tuesday, the first day of bilateral follow-up talks in Tokyo over their insurance markets.
During the talks, which will continue through Thursday, Finance Ministry officials explained that Japan has been carrying out all the requirements as promised in the 1996 bilateral accord devised to promote deregulation here. The requirements include the reform of two ratings organizations that set compulsory rates for nonlife insurers.
But officials of the U.S. Trade Representative’s office expressed concerns about the reforms and about the ministry’s quick approval process for new products, ministry officials said.
The USTR officials also told the Japanese delegates that the USTR has been encouraging state-level insurance authorities to adopt unified regulations across the U.S. to give Japanese insurers easier access to local markets, ministry officials said. Washington promised to make such efforts in a 1994 agreement.
Tokyo negotiators asked their counterparts to step up the efforts, while the U.S. side did not make any specific demands about Japan’s deregulation, ministry officials said.
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