Japan’s top currency official said the current account surplus is the result of investments abroad rather than the exchange of goods, and it should not become a trade issue.
It is not uncommon for Japan’s savings to grow because of its aging population, Masatsugu Asakawa, vice finance minister of international affairs, said at a conference in Tokyo on Sunday.
His remarks came after trade negotiator Toshimitsu Motegi urged bilateral talks with the U.S. as soon as possible, following U.S. President Donald Trump’s complaining about years of “unfair” trade.
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said last week that talks with Japan are urgent, and that he plans to visit this month.
Asakawa said a multilateral approach is needed to improve global imbalances and that Japan, as this year’s chair of the Group of 20, wants to promote discussions on this issue at the G20 meeting in June.