Business

Japan to lift tariffs on US wine under trade pact: Report

TOKYO Japan has agreed to phase out tariffs on US wine imports as part of a bilateral trade deal expected to be signed at the end of the month, the Nikkei newspaper reported yesterday.

Japan will eliminate the tariffs on US wine within five to seven years after the trade agreement goes into effect, the Nikkei reported without giving its sources.

Japan taxes imported wine at a rate of 15 per cent or 125 yen (S$1.60) a litre, whichever is cheaper, according to the Nikkei. The elimination of the tariffs could cut the cost of US wine by about 13 per cent for wine distributors, the Nikkei said.

The agreement between the US and Japan is expected to be signed on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly meeting later this month.

The trade agreement is also expected to gradually lower tariffs on US beef imports to 9 per cent in 2033 from 38.5 per cent now, the Nikkei said.

Last month, the US and Japan agreed in principle on the core elements of a free-trade deal that would cool a trade dispute between the allies.

The US is also trying to de-escalate its year-long trade war with China.

Chinese trade deputies are expected to meet their US counterparts in Washington before minister-level meetings in early October in the US capital. - REUTERS

BUSINESS & FINANCE