Canada, Japan Move Toward Free Trade

Posted on Tuesday, November 15 at 10:30 by jensonj
The two countries could announce the framework deal and study launch as early as this week, during the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation leaders' meeting in Busan, South Korea, federal government sources say. But they caution that scheduling conflicts could postpone official word of these developments until a later, high-level meeting takes place within several months. Japan is Canada's third-biggest overall trading partner today after the United States and China, with two-way trade in goods and services totalling $27.3-billion last year. Canada sees the Asian country as part of its strategy to diversify trade beyond the United States, which consumed more than 84 per cent of Canadian exports last year. International Trade Minister Jim Peterson said that "work is well under way" for a framework deal and study, and pledging that Ottawa will consult Canadian business before agreeing to launch free-trade talks with Japan.

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