WASHINGTON (Kyodo) U.S. Trade Representative Robert Zoellick took a negative stance Tuesday on the possibility of the United States holding bilateral free-trade negotiations with Japan or South Korea, citing the two countries’ reluctance to open their agriculture markets.

But the United States might be able to launch FTA negotiations with the two Asian countries if global trade talks under the auspices of the World Trade Organization reach an accord to liberalize farm trade, he said during a congressional forum.

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