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Japan and the Philippines have agreed on a quota of Filipino nurses and caregivers that Japan will accept under a bilateral free-trade agreement to be signed by leaders of the two countries on Sept. 9, government sources said Thursday.

Tokyo is expected to allow 400 to 500 nurses and caregivers annually after the FTA takes effect next year.

The accord on personnel transfers will be stipulated in an annex that will be attached to the pact, the sources said.

The two countries struck a basic FTA accord in November 2004, but negotiations on legislating it had bogged down mainly over the issues of how many people Japan should accept and details on the liberalization of Manila’s auto and steel sectors, they said.

Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and Philippine President Gloria Arroyo will sign the FTA on the sidelines of the Asia-Europe Meeting from Sept. 10 to 11 in Helsinki, they said.

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