Canada-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (CJEPA)
Canada is committed to pursuing new opportunities to deepen trade and economic cooperation with Japan. During Prime Minister Harper's March 2012 visit to Japan, he and then Prime Minister Noda announced the launch of comprehensive and high-level economic partnership agreement (EPA) negotiations, or free trade negotiations (see News Release: PM announces launch of free trade negotiations with Japan). This historic announcement followed the March 7, 2012, release of the "Report of the Joint Study on the Possibility of a Canada-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement".
In addition to discussions about free trade, Canadian and Japanese senior officials meet for regular consultations in the context of the Joint Economic Committee (JEC). One of the basic documents that lays the groundwork for bilateral cooperation on economic and trade policy is the "Canada-Japan Economic Framework" signed in 2005.
Status of the negotiations
On March 25, 2012, Prime Minister Harper and then Prime Minister Noda announced the launch of comprehensive and high-level economic partnership agreement (EPA) negotiations, or free trade negotiations, in Tokyo, Japan (see News Release: PM announces launch of free trade negotiations with Japan).
The announcement followed the March 7, 2012, release of a Canada and Japan Joint Study examining the feasibility for a free trade agreement and outlining a broad range of issues which could be negotiated, including trade in goods, services, investment and trade facilitation (see Report of the Joint Study on the Possibility of a Canada-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement). The Joint Study examines each country’s approach to these various issues, and the areas of common ground. The study also summarizes the significant economic gains to be achieved through an EPA with Japan. The Study projects potential gross domestic product gains of approximately $4 billion each for Canada and Japan as a result of free trade. According to the study’s findings, there remains much untapped potential in the Canada-Japan trade relationship.
Announced on October 29, 2012, by the Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, the first full round of negotiations was held in Tokyo the week of November 26, 2012 (see News Release: Harper Government Set to Launch First Full Round of Trade Negotiations with Japan). This productive round allowed for progress to be made across a broad range of areas. Canada looks forward to hosting a second round in early spring 2013, in Ottawa (see News Release: Canada and Japan Conclude Productive First Round of Trade Negotiations).
Japan: Canada’s Partner in Asia-Pacific
Canada-Japan relations are underpinned by political, economic and cultural ties which are bolstered by common values and mutual positive perceptions. Today, Canada and Japan are partners in numerous international groups and organizations including the G8, G20, APEC, the ASEAN Regional Forum, and the OECD. Both Canada and Japan are strongly committed to ensuring continued economic vitality, cooperative political relations, and development in the Asia-Pacific region.
Trade and economic relations between Canada and Japan have been steadily expanding. With a gross domestic product of $5.8 trillion, Japan is the world's third largest national economy and one of Canada's most important economic and commercial partners.
Japan is by far Canada's largest bilateral foreign direct investment (FDI) partner in Asia. Japan's FDI in Canada totalled $12.8 billion in 2011, coming from approximately 330 Japanese subsidiaries and affiliate companies operating in Canada and employing tens of thousands of Canadians. Canadian investment in Japan is also significant and diverse with about 90 companies that have a permanent Japanese presence, primarily in the automotive, ICT, financial services, and forestry sectors. The stock of Canadian direct investment in Japan in 2011 increased to $8.4 billion.
Japan is also Canada's fourth-largest partner in two-way merchandise trade (second in Asia after China). Canada's merchandise exports to Japan totalled $10.4 billion in 2012 while imports from Japan reached $15.0 billion. Mineral fuels and oils (mainly coking coal) were Canada's primary merchandise export commodity shipped to Japan in 2012, while vehicles and vehicle parts, machinery, and electrical equipment & electronics were Canada's largest merchandise import commodities sourced from Japan.
- Joint Study on the Possibility of a Canada-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement
- Embassy of Canada to Japan
- Japan Overview (Export Development Canada)
- Japan Overview (Trade Commissioner Service)
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