You choose, we deliver
If you are interested in this story, you might be interested in others from The Journal Gazette. Go to www.journalgazette.net/newsletter and pick the subjects you care most about. We'll deliver your customized daily news report at 3 a.m. Fort Wayne time, right to your email.

Business

  • Hyundai Motor to pay $10 billion for Gangnam land
      SEOUL, South Korea – A consortium led by Hyundai Motor Co. has offered $10 billion for land in Seoul’s tony Gangnam district where it will build a new headquarters.
  • Consumer prices fall, easing inflation fears
    WASHINGTON – U.S. consumer prices edged down in August, the first monthly drop since the spring of 2013, as gasoline, airline tickets and clothing prices all fell.
  • Fed to keep interest at record low
    WASHINGTON – The Federal Reserve signaled Wednesday that it plans to keep a key interest rate at a record low because a broad range of U.S. economic measures remain subpar.
Advertisement
Associated Press
U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman answers to a reporter's question before meeting with Japanese Economy Minister Akira Amari in Tokyo Wednesday, April 9, 2014. (AP Photo/Kyodo News)

Japan, US struggle to bridge gaps over trade pact

– U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman and a top Japanese official said Wednesday they still hope to bridge significant differences over opening markets under an ambitious pan-Pacific trade pact.

Froman and Japanese economy minister Akira Amari were meeting in Tokyo after talks earlier in the week appeared to stall. A meeting planned between Froman and Japan’s trade minister, Toshimitsu Motegi, was cancelled, according to the ministry for unspecified reasons.

“There is still a big gap. We need to mutually, I said mutually, consider how to overcome that,” Amari, who is in charge of Japan’s negotiations over the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact, told reporters.

Japan is one of a dozen nations participating in the U.S.-led TPP trade initiative. Talks aimed at setting a basic agreement have extended beyond a 2013 deadline, with no obvious signs the various countries will come to a consensus any time soon.

The U.S. wants Japan to open its markets wider to U.S. farm products in areas Tokyo has reserved for greater protections, such as dairy products, rice and beef. Amari said the two sides hope to forge a basic agreement before President Barack Obama visits Japan later this month.

He said Obama’s visit was not a “deadline” but a target to aim for.

Froman was also cautious.

“We have a lot of work to do,” he said.

Japan and Australia reached agreement on Monday on lifting some trade barriers, but Japanese media reports cited Froman saying that deal falls short of the requirements of the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Advertisement