U.S. and Japan reach initial trade agreement


The United States and Japan announced that the two countries have agreed to an initial trade agreement. The agreement will provide U.S. manufacturers with additional market access to America’s third-largest export market. As a result of AFFI’s proactive efforts during the negotiation process, a number of frozen products will be favorably impacted in the Japanese tariff list and will either be duty free immediately upon implementation of the agreement or duty-free in a staged manner over time.

The following frozen products will be duty-free upon implementation:

  • Frozen fruits: frozen strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, mulberries, loganberries, currants, and gooseberries whether or not containing added sugar.
  • Frozen vegetables: frozen peas, beans, sweet corn, and other mixed, prepared or preserved vegetables.

The below product will be duty-free three years after implementation beginning with a 50 percent tariff cut.

  • Frozen Baked potatoes

Products that will be duty-free five years after implementation beginning with approximately a 33 percent tariff cut.

  • Frozen Potatoes (whole)
  • Frozen Broccoli
  • Frozen Mixed vegetables, chiefly consisting of sweet corn
  • Frozen Potatoes mashed and other potatoes prepared or preserved
  • Frozen Sweet corn, no added sugar

The below frozen processed products will be duty-free 8 years after implementation beginning with approximately a 22 percent tariff cut.

  • Frozen Waffles
  • Frozen Pizza

Products that will be duty-free 10 years after implementation beginning with approximately an 18 percent tariff cut.

  • Frozen Leguminous vegetables prepared or preserved

More information is available here on the fact sheet.

In 2018, Japan imported more than $14.1 billion in U.S. products and has been identified as a major market of opportunity for many U.S. food manufacturing companies. As a result of this agreement, more than 90 percent of all food and agricultural imports into Japan will be duty free or receive reduced tariffs in a staged manner. The timeline for implementation of the trade agreement is however, yet to be determined.

To view AFFI’s comments to the United States Trade Representative regarding the U.S-Japan trade agreement, please click here.

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