The results of the recent British referendum in favor of leaving the European Union call for a reappraisal of British interests in relation to Japan. These can, in my view, be summed up in the following oversimplified terms.

Japan remains an important trading partner for Britain and significant source of investment in manufacturing and finance. Britain, accordingly, needs a prosperous and politically stable Japan. It is a vital British interest that Japan should remain outward-looking and liberal in its trade policies. Britain, too, must remain open and renew its efforts to encourage and welcome Japanese investment.

Continuing Japanese prosperity hinges on the success of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's economic policies (Abenomics). So far success has been limited. Abe's third arrow, which aims at modernizing Japanese business practices and removing anti-competitive barriers, has so far had only modest results. If Japan is to maintain outward-looking trade policies, more needs to be achieved.