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Japan and Switzerland signed a free-trade agreement Thursday, paving the way for the two to eliminate tariffs on more than 99 percent of their trade in value terms over the next 10 years.

The agreement, signed by Foreign Minister Hirofumi Nakasone and Swiss Economy Minister Doris Leuthard in Tokyo, will take effect by the end of this year if the two countries complete the domestic ratification procedures as scheduled, Japanese officials said.

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