Japan politics – Const Japan http://const-japan.com/ Thu, 23 Sep 2021 01:47:13 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8 https://const-japan.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/icon-2021-07-05T131502.299-150x150.png Japan politics – Const Japan http://const-japan.com/ 32 32 Taiwan follows China in attempt to join Trans-Pacific Trade Pact https://const-japan.com/taiwan-follows-china-in-attempt-to-join-trans-pacific-trade-pact/ Thu, 23 Sep 2021 01:18:45 +0000 https://const-japan.com/taiwan-follows-china-in-attempt-to-join-trans-pacific-trade-pact/ Updates to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for the Trans-Pacific Partnership Sign up for myFT Daily Digest to be the first to hear about the latest on the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Taiwan applied to join a major Trans-Pacific Trade Pact just a week after China submitted its own membership application, […]]]>

Updates to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for the Trans-Pacific Partnership

Taiwan applied to join a major Trans-Pacific Trade Pact just a week after China submitted its own membership application, pitting the two opponents against each other in a race for membership.

Taiwan’s formal request to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement on Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) will force other members of the pact to engage in a delicate political balancing act.

“We submitted the formal request this afternoon,” an official in Taiwan’s presidential office told the Financial Times on Wednesday.

A senior Taiwanese trade policy official confirmed that the request had been sent to New Zealand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, which processes applications for membership in the CPTPP. A ministry spokesperson said the request would be shared with other signatories to the trade deal before a decision was made on “whether or not to initiate membership processes.”

The almost simultaneous demands from China and Taiwan create more rivalry at a time of great tension between the two. Beijing claims Taiwan as part of its territory and threatens to invade it if Taiwan indefinitely refuses unification.

The Chinese government frequently puts pressure on third countries as well as international organizations, non-governmental organizations and business enterprises to help isolate Taipei and deny it full participation in international affairs.

Trade experts from Taiwan and Japan said that while China’s and Taiwan’s membership in the World Trade Organization was a precedent for the two countries participating in a trade deal, the power and political assertion of Beijing were now much larger, making a CPTPP deal for both more politically complex.

China and Taiwan joined the WTO one month apart in 2001 and 2002.

In recent years, China has frequently used its economic might to “punish” other countries, including Australia and South Korea, for political decisions it dislikes, with sudden bans on some imports. from these countries or a suspension of Chinese tourism.

Rival offers from Beijing and Taipei to join CPTPP will cause trade group members to fear that a failure to quickly agree to China’s membership or a decision to allow Taiwan first could trigger further economic coercion on the part from Beijing.

The CPTPP was originally designed by the United States to limit Beijing’s growing influence in the region, and was revived at the initiative of Japan after the abandonment of the United States. Under its rules, all existing members have a veto right over new members.

Ahead of Taiwan’s candidacy, Charles Finny, a former New Zealand diplomat and trade negotiator, expected Beijing’s sudden decision to join the CPTPP would likely spur Taipei into action.

“Taiwan must be a member before or at the same time as China. I don’t see the Taiwanese taking the risk that China will be able to veto any Taiwanese candidacy, ”said Finny, who has negotiated free trade agreements with Beijing and Taipei.

Trade experts have also previously noted that Taiwan has shown it meets the necessary standards under its free trade agreements with Singapore and New Zealand, which are founding members of the CPTPP.

Taiwan has wanted to join the CPTPP for years and has completed most of the legal preparations necessary to deregulate the country’s markets to meet the standards of the pact. However, Taipei had taken its time with the formal request as it had not completed informal consultations with club members.

Japan, which has the rotating CPTPP presidency this year, urged Taipei to conclude its preparatory talks and apply before the presidency moves to Singapore in January.

A Japanese diplomat involved in the matter told the FT this month that Tokyo feared Taipei would lose any chance of joining the regional trade grouping once China joined it.

China’s official decision to join the CPTPP last week took its members and Taiwan by surprise. Although Beijing has previously publicly expressed interest in joining the trade club and started pressuring some members for their support in the past two months, it has not held detailed consultations.

The dominant role of state-owned enterprises in the Chinese economy, in particular, is seen as an obstacle to the country’s membership in the CPTPP.

The New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The Taiwanese government is expected to announce its decision later on Wednesday, once it informs the other 11 CPTPP members of its candidacy.

Additional reporting by Kana Inagaki in Tokyo

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LDP race in Japan set to end as 3 prospects go their separate ways https://const-japan.com/ldp-race-in-japan-set-to-end-as-3-prospects-go-their-separate-ways/ Wed, 22 Sep 2021 17:14:00 +0000 https://const-japan.com/ldp-race-in-japan-set-to-end-as-3-prospects-go-their-separate-ways/ TOKYO – The presidential race for the ruling Liberal Democratic Party is shaping up to be a three-way contest, according to a Nikkei / TV Tokyo poll, making it increasingly likely that the winner will be decided by a second round. The two main candidates – former PLD policy chief Fumio Kishida and vaccination czar […]]]>

TOKYO – The presidential race for the ruling Liberal Democratic Party is shaping up to be a three-way contest, according to a Nikkei / TV Tokyo poll, making it increasingly likely that the winner will be decided by a second round.

The two main candidates – former PLD policy chief Fumio Kishida and vaccination czar Taro Kono – have broad support from party lawmakers Sanae Takaichi, third, aggressively courting members to catch up their delay, according to the survey conducted Tuesday and Wednesday.

Each legislator has one vote in the September 29 elections to choose the next party president, for a total of 382. Base members represent 382 additional votes. If no one wins an outright majority, the race will switch to a second round between the top two contenders.

Kishida led lawmakers’ support in the investigation, garnering nearly 30% support, or over 100 Diet members.

In addition to the 46 members of his own faction, Kishida gained support from other prominent blocs like the Hosoda, Aso and Tanigaki factions.

Kono, who is also minister responsible for administrative reform, was closely behind with more than 20% support from lawmakers. He was supported by half of the Aso faction, to which he belongs, as well as by the majority of the Ishiba faction and part of the Nikai faction. He was also popular among unaffiliated lawmakers.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, former PLD secretary general Shigeru Ishiba and Environment Minister Shinjiro Koizumi, all prominent figures not participating in the race, also support Kono.

Takaichi, former Minister of Interior and Communications, does not belong to any faction but is supported by former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Half of the Hosoda faction, to which Abe belonged, rallied around her, as did unaffiliated Tory lawmakers. Overall, she had the support of over 20% of lawmakers.

From left to right: Minister of Administrative Reform Taro Kono, former political leader of the PLD Fumio Kishida and former Home Affairs Ministers Sanae Takaichi and Seiko Noda. (Photo by Kento Awashima)

Seiko Noda, another former Home Affairs and Communications minister, struggled to gain traction beyond the 20 endorsements she received to launch her candidacy. She was the last to join the race, announcing her candidacy the day before the official campaign began.

Kono was popular among younger lawmakers, receiving support from Diet members from the first to sixth terms, while Kishida led the pack among the elders in their seventh term and beyond.

About 90 lawmakers were undecided or did not respond on Wednesday.

Given how tight the race looks, it’s unclear whether Kishida or Kono could win a majority even if one of them gets 80% of the backing from undecided lawmakers. Candidates need at least 55% of the rank and file votes to win.

In the event of a second round, the first two candidates will compete for a total of 429 votes: 382 from legislators and 47, or one per prefecture, from grassroots members of the party. This will give supporters fewer votes in a second round, although lawmakers can change their own votes depending on the outcome of the first round.


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UK may seek to join US-Mexico-Canada trade deal as Boris Johnson ‘drops’ deal with Joe Biden https://const-japan.com/uk-may-seek-to-join-us-mexico-canada-trade-deal-as-boris-johnson-drops-deal-with-joe-biden/ Tue, 21 Sep 2021 21:00:00 +0000 https://const-japan.com/uk-may-seek-to-join-us-mexico-canada-trade-deal-as-boris-johnson-drops-deal-with-joe-biden/ The UK is considering applying to join the US-Mexico-Canada trade deal after Boris Johnson acknowledged that a bilateral deal with Washington would not take place until the next general election. The rapprochement with the three North American powers could be an alternative to the development of a tailor-made free trade agreement between the United States […]]]>

The UK is considering applying to join the US-Mexico-Canada trade deal after Boris Johnson acknowledged that a bilateral deal with Washington would not take place until the next general election.

The rapprochement with the three North American powers could be an alternative to the development of a tailor-made free trade agreement between the United States and the United Kingdom, estimates the government.

Joe Biden has indicated that he is not interested in new bilateral agreements, unlike Donald Trump. But extending existing agreements may prove to be less politically controversial.

When asked during his trip to the United States if a transatlantic deal will be reached by 2024, Mr Johnson said: “We will continue with the free trade agreements as quickly as possible.”

He added, “We do significant exports with free trade agreements including to the United States and I have a lot of reason to be optimistic about that, but I just, you know, these , the Americans are negotiating very hard. What I want for our country is a great free trade agreement. I will not settle for anything less.

Appearing on Tuesday with US Vice President Kamala Harris, Mr Johnson said there had been “real progress” on trade, welcoming the end of a “strange ban” on imports of British beef.

A senior government official said if bilateral talks with the United States fail, the United Kingdom will continue to explore other options, including becoming the fourth member of the USMCA. They added, “There are a variety of different ways to do this. The question is whether the US administration is ready. The ball is in the court of the United States.

Britain currently has more comprehensive trade deals with Canada and Mexico than with the United States, a point British officials have stressed in meetings with their American counterparts.

If Mr Johnson fails to strike a trade deal with Washington, he will run in the next election with one of his main manifesto promises broken and unanswered questions about how Britain can make the best of it. Brexit party.

Ahead of the last election in 2019, the Tories said they would “aim for 80% of UK trade to be covered by free trade agreements over the next three years, starting with the United States, the Australia, New Zealand and Japan “. Agreements with Australia and Japan have already been concluded and a pact with New Zealand is expected in a few weeks.

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The UK is also seeking to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement on Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade bloc of 11 members including Japan, which was originally created by the United States before Donald Trump left. took of.

Liz Truss, the new foreign minister, has said she wants to integrate foreign and trade policy more closely.

She told reporters: “What I want to do in the job of foreign minister is to link our trade work, our diplomatic work and our security work much more closely. Because now we are an independent trading nation, we have a real opportunity to be much more free and flexible in how we use our policies. “


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World leaders return to UN and face many worsening crises https://const-japan.com/world-leaders-return-to-un-and-face-many-worsening-crises/ Tue, 21 Sep 2021 10:10:56 +0000 https://const-japan.com/world-leaders-return-to-un-and-face-many-worsening-crises/ World leaders will return to the United Nations for the first time in two years on Tuesday with a formidable program of escalating crises to contend with, including the still raging COVID-19 pandemic and an ever-warming planet. Other pressing issues are rising US-China tensions, the unstable future of Afghanistan under its new Taliban rulers, and […]]]>

World leaders will return to the United Nations for the first time in two years on Tuesday with a formidable program of escalating crises to contend with, including the still raging COVID-19 pandemic and an ever-warming planet.

Other pressing issues are rising US-China tensions, the unstable future of Afghanistan under its new Taliban rulers, and ongoing conflicts in Yemen, Syria and the besieged Tigray region of Ethiopia.

Last year, no leader came to the UN because the coronavirus was sweeping the world, so all of their addresses were pre-registered. This year, the General Assembly offered leaders the choice of coming to New York or staying online, and more than 100 heads of state and government decided to appear in person in the General Assembly Hall. .

UN Secretary-General Antonio Gutteres, who opens the week-long event, “will make no effort to voice concern about the state of the world, and he will present a vision for bridging the many gaps that stand in the way. to progress. “Said UN spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric.

Traditionally, the first country to speak is Brazil, whose president, Jair Bolsonaro, is not vaccinated. He reiterated last Thursday that he was not planning to get the vaccine anytime soon, justifying his refusal by saying he had COVID-19 and therefore had a high level of antibodies.

A key issue ahead of the meetings was the COVID-19 entry requirements for leaders in the United States – and at UN headquarters itself. The United States requires a recent COVID-19 vaccination or test, and the United Nations will enforce an honor system whereby anyone entering the complex certifies that they do not have symptoms of COVID-19 and have not tested positive in the past 10 days.

The three most watched speakers on Tuesday morning are expected to be US President Joe Biden, appearing at the UN for the first time since his loss to Donald Trump in the November election, Chinese President Xi Jinping, who in a surprise gesture will deliver a video speech, and the recently elected radical Iranian president, Ebrahim Raisi.

Ahead of the opening of the General Assembly’s annual general debate, Guterres issued a stern warning that the world could be plunged into a possibly more dangerous new Cold War unless the United States and China mend their relationship. ” totally dysfunctional ”.

The UN chief said in an interview this weekend with The Associated Press that Washington and Beijing should cooperate on the climate crisis and negotiate on trade and technology, but “unfortunately today we don’t have only one confrontation “including on human rights and geostrategic issues mainly in the South China Sea.

Speaking on Biden’s speech last week, Richard Gowan, director of the International Crisis Group at the UN, said “the really important question is exactly how he frames relations with China.” He predicted that Biden “won’t be as outspoken in criticizing China as Trump has been, particularly in 2019 and 2020”, but rather “will try to portray China as a country that challenges the order. rules-based world and a country that should not be given the leadership of the international system. On the latest list of speakers released earlier this month, China’s speech was due to be delivered by a deputy prime minister on Friday. But the UN confirmed on Monday that Xi would give the country’s video address instead.

His speech and any commentary on the American rivalry will certainly be closely watched and analyzed.

Other leaders are due to speak in person at the meeting, which ends on September 27, including King Abdullah II of Jordan, the president of Venezuela, and the prime ministers of Japan, India and the United Kingdom. Uni as well as the new Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Leaders who have delivered pre-recorded statements this year include the Presidents of Egypt, Indonesia, South Africa and Zimbabwe. French President Emmanuel Macron was supposed to deliver a prerecorded statement on Tuesday, but the government has said Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian will now deliver the country’s speech on virtually the last day. France and China have reacted angrily to the surprise announcement by Biden, alongside Australian and British leaders, of an agreement to supply Australia with at least eight nuclear-powered submarines. Australia had signed a contract worth at least $ 66 billion for a dozen French conventional diesel-electric submarines and their construction was already underway.

Le Drian told a press conference on Monday that there is a “crisis of confidence” between the United States and its oldest ally, France, as well as Europe, which has been excluded from the new alliance. American-British-Australia focused on the Indo-Pacific and aimed at confrontation with China. He said Europeans “should not be left behind” and must define their own strategic interests.

(This story was not edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


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Sanae Takaichi hopes to be Japan’s first female leader https://const-japan.com/sanae-takaichi-hopes-to-be-japans-first-female-leader/ Mon, 20 Sep 2021 19:39:00 +0000 https://const-japan.com/sanae-takaichi-hopes-to-be-japans-first-female-leader/ Mr. Abe is widely seen as failing to deliver on his promises to advance women in society. Within the framework of the World Economic Forum annual gender gap analysis, Japan, which has the world’s third-largest economy, ranks 120th out of 156 countries. Women still struggle to gain traction in Japanese politics, especially at the national […]]]>

Mr. Abe is widely seen as failing to deliver on his promises to advance women in society. Within the framework of the World Economic Forum annual gender gap analysis, Japan, which has the world’s third-largest economy, ranks 120th out of 156 countries.

Women still struggle to gain traction in Japanese politics, especially at the national level. Yuriko Koike, the governor of Tokyo, founded a party in 2017 to try to disrupt a national election that year, but Mr Abe led the Lib Dems to victory, while Ms Koike’s party failed. received only mixed support.

Another woman in the Liberal Democratic leadership race, Seiko Noda, 61, has explicitly promoted gender equality. But she barely got enough signatures from party lawmakers to qualify as a candidate.

Political analysts have said women in particular need to tackle to get into the Liberal Democrats. “To compensate for this inconvenience of being a woman, you have to show excessive loyalty to conservatives,” said Mari Miura, professor of political science at Sophia University in Tokyo. “And that means you have to be hawkish and anti-feminist.”

Gender aside, Ms Takaichi is an unusual leadership contestant as she does not come from a prominent political family. The main contenders – Taro Kono, 58, and Fumio Kishida, 64 – are both sons and grandsons of MPs. Mr Abe’s grandfather was also prime minister.

Ms. Takaichi’s mother was a police officer in Nara and her father worked for an automobile company affiliated with Toyota. In a memoir, Ms Takaichi wrote that she had been admitted to two top private universities, Waseda and Keio, but her parents wanted to save the tuition money for her younger brother.

Instead, she attended Kobe University, a public school, where she played the drums and rode a motorcycle. After graduation, she spent a year in the United States, where she interned with Patricia Schroeder, then the Democratic Member of Parliament for Colorado.


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Global stocks slide to month low as default fears haunt China’s Evergrande https://const-japan.com/global-stocks-slide-to-month-low-as-default-fears-haunt-chinas-evergrande/ Mon, 20 Sep 2021 10:26:21 +0000 https://const-japan.com/global-stocks-slide-to-month-low-as-default-fears-haunt-chinas-evergrande/ Global stocks slipped and the dollar strengthened on Monday ahead of a week full of global central bank meetings, while debt problems at real estate group China Evergrande dragged Hong Kong stocks to a year-long low . European stocks were down 1.8%, sliding to two-month lows, energy and mining stocks collapsing as the dollar’s leap […]]]>

Global stocks slipped and the dollar strengthened on Monday ahead of a week full of global central bank meetings, while debt problems at real estate group China Evergrande dragged Hong Kong stocks to a year-long low .

European stocks were down 1.8%, sliding to two-month lows, energy and mining stocks collapsing as the dollar’s leap to nearly four-week highs crushed commodity prices .

The holidays in Japan, China and South Korea meant trade was thin in Asia, while politics added further uncertainty with elections in Canada and Germany ending the week.

Evergrande’s China shares fell 12% after losing as much as 19% earlier to more than 11-year lows. The company’s listed units also fell, with investors worried about the property developer’s ability to repay a small portion of its $ 305 billion debt owed on Thursday.

Evergrande’s problems have added to growing concerns about the health of the Chinese economy following Beijing’s recent crackdown on tech companies. The Hang Seng Index fell 3.5%, while Singapore-traded FTSE China futures fell 3%.

MSCI’s largest Asia-Pacific stock index outside of Japan slipped 1.7% to its lowest level since Aug. 24, Australian stocks in their worst session in nearly seven months, s ‘collapsing 2.1%.

The MSCI All Country World Index fell 0.5%, close to a one-month low and even lower from record highs reached earlier this month.

Jim Reid of Deutsche Bank wrote in a research note that it was puzzling when the stock markets were around a few percent of their record highs as Asia’s largest dollar high-yielding company Evergrande, with liabilities of $ 300 billion, was on the brink.

“With no one who really knows how the training will be run and if there will be contagion,” said Reid.

Dow Jones futures fell 1.3% and S&P 500 futures fell 1%, after all three Wall Street indices posted weekly losses on Friday after days of turbulence. [.N]

The Fed is still expected to set the stage for a cut at its policy meeting on Tuesday and Wednesday, although the consensus is that an actual announcement will be delayed until the November or December meetings.

Yields on 10-year Treasuries were last at 1.3498%, moving away from a two-month high and the curve flattened ahead of the meeting.

The two-year yield, which rises along with traders’ expectations for higher federal funds rates, hit its highest level since August 27. [US/]

“A flatter yield curve suggests some fears that the Fed may exaggerate the eventual upward cycle,” said Tapas Strickland, director of economics at NAB.

He noted that only 2-3 FOMC members would need to change their dot plot forecast for an increase in 2022 to make it the median, given that seven of the 18 members had already announced a decision next year.

Germany’s 10-year yield, the benchmark for the eurozone, fell more than a basis point to -0.295%, remaining below the 10-week high hit on Friday after a report suggested that the European Central Bank (ECB) expects to hit its inflation target by 2025.

Isabel Schnabel, member of the ECB’s executive board, is due to deliver a speech on Monday at 11:35 GMT.

Investors were also monitoring a dozen other central bank meetings in Japan, Indonesia, Philippines, Taiwan, UK, Switzerland, Sweden, Norway, Brazil, South Africa, Turkey and in Hungary.

Norges Bank is expected to become the first central bank in the G10 to raise rates on Thursday.

High US yields and general risk aversion in the markets pushed the dollar to a four-week high against a basket of rival currencies. The US dollar index was last at 93.363 [FRX/]

It was linked to the yen at 109.88, while the euro was at a three-week low at $ 1.1710 due to uncertainty ahead of the election in Germany.

The offshore Chinese yuan hit a three-week low, falling to 6.4698 yuan on the dollar, its lowest since August 31.

Canada heads to the polls on Monday with the race too close to be announced.

The stronger dollar kept gold and oil under pressure, with bullion stuck at $ 1,754 an ounce after hitting lows of more than five weeks. [GOL/]

Crude oil prices have also been affected by the resumption of production by energy companies in the Gulf of Mexico in the United States after consecutive hurricanes in the region halted production. [O/R]

Brent fell 0.9% to $ 74.65 a barrel, while US crude fell 1.2% to $ 71.12.


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Brexit Britain set to boost £ 326bn industry as new business master plan unveiled | Politics | New https://const-japan.com/brexit-britain-set-to-boost-326bn-industry-as-new-business-master-plan-unveiled-politics-new/ Sun, 19 Sep 2021 23:01:00 +0000 https://const-japan.com/brexit-britain-set-to-boost-326bn-industry-as-new-business-master-plan-unveiled-politics-new/ New International Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan is targeting unfair or discriminatory digital trade barriers in a bid to rocket a UK economy now free from EU rules and regulations. Ms Trevelyan, who took over from Liz Truss after the Tory MP for South West Norfolk was promoted to Foreign Secretary last week, will today present […]]]>

New International Trade Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan is targeting unfair or discriminatory digital trade barriers in a bid to rocket a UK economy now free from EU rules and regulations. Ms Trevelyan, who took over from Liz Truss after the Tory MP for South West Norfolk was promoted to Foreign Secretary last week, will today present the challenges facing the sector in a keynote address to leaders of the industry that will launch London Tech Week. .

At the same time, the Department for International Trade (DIT) will today release a five-point plan to establish a free and fair digital business landscape to help UK businesses and consumers thrive.

Speaking before her speech, she said: “We all depend on digital commerce, but UK businesses face digital barriers in countries that take a protectionist approach.

“I want the UK to break down these barriers and open up exciting new opportunities for businesses and consumers so we can see improved productivity, jobs and growth.”

She added: “Our five-point plan is the first step in shaping international digital trade policy for decades to come.

“Through our network of international agreements, we innovate, advance innovative ideas and set a new golden standard for digital commerce.”

Many businesses currently face barriers that hamper their ability to take advantage of digital technologies such as paperless commerce, or that force them to meet unwarranted requirements to locate data or disclose their intellectual properties such as source code. .

DIT believes that streamlining digital commerce will enable businesses across all industries to reach more customers by making it easier to sell online, while helping them to trade efficiently and profitably.

JUSTIN: EU rules will be ‘catastrophic’ for Irish economy, tax expert warns

In accordance with the five-point plan, the DIT:

  • Facilitate more open digital markets to ensure that UK consumers and businesses have better access to digital markets in other countries.
  • Advocate for free and reliable cross-border data flows that will simplify and cost less for businesses that use data to trade internationally while maintaining the UK’s high standards of personal data protection
  • Defend consumer and business protections through improved consumer and intellectual property protections
  • Promote the development and adoption of innovative digital trade systems such as digital customs processes, electronic contracts and paperless commerce, which can reduce bureaucracy and make trade easier, cheaper, faster and more secure
  • Establish global cooperation on digital trade through free trade agreements with international partners and using our G7 presidency and WTO headquarters to push countries to become more open to digital trade.

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Figures from the Office for National Statistics show that digital commerce is vital to the growth of businesses in the UK, worth £ 326 billion in 2019.

The digital sector contributed £ 150.6 billion to the UK economy in 2019 and employing 4.6% of the national workforce, according to economic estimates from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport ( DCMS).

Last year, the UK opened a full digital chapter as part of the free trade agreement with Japan.

Additionally, in June, negotiations were launched on a cutting-edge digital economy deal with Singapore, an initiative that will push the boundaries of digital commerce even further.

Over the next few months, the UK will aim to link negotiations with other key partners, including Australia and New Zealand.

In doing so, the government hopes to be able to support Britain’s candidacy for membership in the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

Confirming the UK’s candidacy for the CPTPP in June, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “Joining the CPTTP free trade partnership would open up unprecedented opportunities for UK businesses and consumers in the Indo-Pacific to rapid growth.

“This is an exciting opportunity to build on this country’s entrepreneurial spirit and free trade history to bring economic benefits to the whole of the UK.”

Ms Truss added: “The CPTPP already has a significant global presence, and our membership would send a powerful signal to the rest of the world that the UK, as an independent trading nation, will continue to stand up for free and fair trade, to fight against protectionism and reduce tariffs. at every opportunity. “


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Australia says France was aware of “serious” submarine problem – NBC10 Philadelphia https://const-japan.com/australia-says-france-was-aware-of-serious-submarine-problem-nbc10-philadelphia/ Sun, 19 Sep 2021 08:27:40 +0000 https://const-japan.com/australia-says-france-was-aware-of-serious-submarine-problem-nbc10-philadelphia/ France would have known Australia had “deep and serious concerns” that a fleet of submarines the French were building would not meet Australian needs, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Sunday after contract cancellation sparked a diplomatic crisis. France accused Australia of concealing its intentions to withdraw from the contract of 90 billion Australian dollars […]]]>

France would have known Australia had “deep and serious concerns” that a fleet of submarines the French were building would not meet Australian needs, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Sunday after contract cancellation sparked a diplomatic crisis.

France accused Australia of concealing its intentions to withdraw from the contract of 90 billion Australian dollars (66 billion dollars) passed to Naval Group, majority owned by the French state, for the construction of 12 sub- conventional diesel-electric sailors.

President Joe Biden last week revealed a new alliance comprising Australia and Britain that would deliver an Australian fleet of at least eight nuclear-powered submarines.

Morrison blamed the change on a deteriorating strategic environment in the Indo-Pacific. He did not specifically mention China’s massive military build-up, which has accelerated in recent years.

“The capability that the Attack Class submarines were going to provide was not what Australia needed to protect our sovereign interests,” Morrison said.

“They would have had every reason to know that we are deeply concerned that the capability provided by the Attack-class submarine does not meet our strategic interests and we have made it clear that we will make a decision based on our strategic national interest. “, He added, referring to the French government.

France has responded to the cancellation of the contract, which Morrison says will cost his government at least A $ 2.4 billion ($ 1.7 billion), recalling its ambassadors from Australia and the United States .

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian on Saturday denounced what he called the “duplicity, contempt and lies” surrounding the sudden end of the contract and said France was now questioning the strength of the ‘alliance.

China has denounced the sharing of this American and British nuclear technology as irresponsible.

France won the contract in 2016 on the offers from Germany and Japan. The Shortfin Barracuda was to be a nuclear submarine designed to be powered by diesel on the surface and battery powered underwater.

Japan was particularly disappointed because then Prime Minister Tony Abbott had promised the close defense ally the contract before he was ousted by his own party in 2015.

The government denied media reports of conflicts between partners in the French submarine project and delays over the initial delivery date of 2027.

There have been concerns about an emerging defense capability gap that the aging Australian-made Collins-class conventional submarines could not fill.

Australia’s first nuclear submarines are not expected to be delivered until 2040.

Defense Minister Peter Dutton has said his government is ready to lease nuclear submarines from the United States while the Australian fleet is built.

Dutton and Foreign Secretary Marise Payne are in the United States for annual meetings with their American counterparts and their first with the Biden administration.

Morrison is flying to the United States on Monday for a meeting with Biden and the Indian and Japanese leaders who make up the Quad Security Forum.


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Senior Chinese official makes rare appearance at war vigil in Japan https://const-japan.com/senior-chinese-official-makes-rare-appearance-at-war-vigil-in-japan/ Sat, 18 Sep 2021 15:49:00 +0000 https://const-japan.com/senior-chinese-official-makes-rare-appearance-at-war-vigil-in-japan/ BEIJING / SHENYANG, China – When a siren sounded at 9:18 a.m. on Saturday to mark the 90th anniversary of a rail bombardment by the Imperial Japanese Army, a senior Chinese official was among the attendees. Zhao Leji, the number 6 of the Communist Party of China and a member of the powerful Politburo Standing […]]]>

BEIJING / SHENYANG, China – When a siren sounded at 9:18 a.m. on Saturday to mark the 90th anniversary of a rail bombardment by the Imperial Japanese Army, a senior Chinese official was among the attendees.

Zhao Leji, the number 6 of the Communist Party of China and a member of the powerful Politburo Standing Committee, was on hand for a ceremony for the so-called Liutiaohu incident – or simply the September 18 incident – in Shenyang, according to the official Xinhua News Agency.

The rare appearance of a top Communist Party leader at this geopolitically sensitive event was a likely message to Japan, which is increasingly making statements on Taiwan Strait stability and human rights in Xinjiang, issues that Beijing sees as home affairs.

It was the first appearance by a senior Chinese official at the ceremony since 2014.

The Imperial Japanese Army blew up a section of the South Manchuria Railway in 1931, made the bombing look like the work of Chinese dissidents, and launched a military campaign in response to the Great Barracks in the North, in an episode known as the Manchurian Incident.

“After 14 years of struggle under the leadership of the party, we have achieved a great victory in the anti-Japanese war,” Zhao said. “We will maintain a correct view of history, accurately grasp the critical significance of the war against Japan, and gain wisdom to move forward.”

At the 80th anniversary commemorative ceremony in 2011, no member of the Politburo Standing Committee attended the event.

The ceremony was held at the 9.18 Historical Museum in the suburb of Shenyang. The museum had been closed for renovation, but reopened on Saturday to coincide with the anniversary.

The Chinese Communist Party now regards the day of the bombing as the start of the Chinese people’s war of resistance against Japanese aggression.

China used to call the Sino-Japanese War “the resistance for 8 years”, recognizing the Marco Polo Bridge incident in July 1937 – a skirmish in a Beijing suburb – as the start of the war, but recently “the 14-year-old war” has become popular parlance in a nod to the Liutiaohu incident as the start of the conflict.

There is an opinion that the high level of importance of the Liutiaohu incident as the starting point of the Sino-Japanese war caused the presence of senior leaders.

It is also pointed out that anti-Japanese sentiment is growing in China. A shopping complex in Dalian, Liaoning Province was closed this month. Although it was only officially opened in August, it has been criticized online as an invasion of Japanese culture.

Zhao’s participation in the ceremony also comes as Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga prepares to attend the first in-person summit of the leaders of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, a grouping of the United States, Japan, India and Australia formed to counter China in the Indo-Pacific.


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LDP faction leader Wataru Takeshita dies at 74 https://const-japan.com/ldp-faction-leader-wataru-takeshita-dies-at-74/ Sat, 18 Sep 2021 05:51:19 +0000 https://const-japan.com/ldp-faction-leader-wataru-takeshita-dies-at-74/ Wataru Takeshita, who led a major faction of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, has died at the age of 74, NHK reported on Saturday. Takeshita died at his home in Tokyo on Friday, the state broadcaster said, citing unidentified sources. The former chairman of the LDP general council was undergoing treatment after revealing in 2019 […]]]>

Wataru Takeshita, who led a major faction of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, has died at the age of 74, NHK reported on Saturday.

Takeshita died at his home in Tokyo on Friday, the state broadcaster said, citing unidentified sources.

The former chairman of the LDP general council was undergoing treatment after revealing in 2019 that he had been diagnosed with esophageal cancer. He returned to work the following November, but announced in July that he was retiring from politics for health reasons, ruling him out of the House of Representatives elections to be held this fall.

Wataru Takeshita | KYODO

“Being afflicted with an illness, I lose my physical and mental power and am in a state where I cannot confidently work for people,” Takeshita said in a statement at the time.

Takeshita started his career as a journalist at NHK and later became secretary to his older brother, Noboru Takeshita, in 1985. Noboru Takeshita was Prime Minister from 1987 to 1989.

Young Takeshita was elected seven times to the seat of Shimane previously held by his brother, first winning in 2000. He has held key government and party positions including minister of Reconstruction as well as the affairs of the PLD Diet. chief.

Members of his faction include Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi and Taimei Yamaguchi, the PLD’s head of electoral strategy.

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