Ministerial Meeting for the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP) and Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs)
Prime Minister Naoto Kan attended the second Ministerial Meeting for the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP) and Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) at the Prime Minister's Office.
Based on the discussions at the meeting, the Prime Minister said, "I
ask that a broad consensus be reached by around June on whether or not Japan
should participate in negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). I
am aware that some say that this still is a very tight schedule, but I want
you to have the understanding that this meeting has the ultimate responsibility
for deciding all matters, including scheduling matters, and for making clear
explanations to the people of Japan.
This is an unavoidable issue when looking toward the next 10, 20, or 30 years of Japan. I believe only when we make active efforts to overcome the issue, can we carve out the future of Japan.
I ask from my heart for your further efforts so that we can advance positively the opening of Japan in the 21st century."