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2014年2月 4日 (火)

TPP交渉 日米は膠着状態の打開に動け

The Yomiuri Shimbun February 3, 2014
Japan, U.S. must go all out to break TPP talemate, preserve momentum
TPP交渉 日米は膠着状態の打開に動け(2月3日付・読売社説)

Efforts to create a new free trade framework in the Asia-Pacific region must not remain at a standstill. To break the impasse, we urge the governments of both Japan and the United States to reach an agreement at the earliest possible time.
 アジア太平洋の新たな自由貿易圏作りを停滞させてはならない。膠着(こうちゃく)状態を打開するために、日米両国が早期合意を目指す必要がある。

Twelve countries including Japan, the United States and Australia are participating in negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership multilateral free trade agreement. However, a ministerial meeting in Singapore toward the end of 2013 ended up abandoning the goal of reaching a conclusion before the end of last year. No substantive TPP talks have taken place since then.
 日米や豪州など12か国による環太平洋経済連携協定(TPP)交渉は、昨年末にシンガポールでの閣僚会合で、目標だった年内合意を見送った。その後、実質交渉が中断している。

It can be said that the process of TPP negotiations is teetering on the edge of success or failure. An upcoming ministerial meeting, which is likely to be scheduled for late February, will be of crucial significance to the future development of the talks.
 交渉は瀬戸際に立っていると言える。2月末の開催で調整中の閣僚会合が重要な節目になろう。

The biggest factor behind the prolonged delay is the standoff between Japan and the United States over such problems as the abolition of tariffs.
 もたついている最大の要因は、日米両国が関税撤廃などを巡って対立していることだ。

There are no signs of the United States softening its tough stance against the Liberal Democratic Party’s assertions that five categories of agricultural products, including rice and wheat, should be exempted from tariff elimination.
 自民党がコメ、麦などの農産品5項目を関税撤廃の例外扱いとするよう主張している点では、米国が強硬姿勢を崩していない。

Akira Amari, the minister in charge of TPP negotiations, had talks over the phone with U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman on Jan. 20, but there was no progress on concluding the broad trade agreement.
 甘利TPP相とフロマン米通商代表が先月20日に電話協議したが、実質的な議論はできなかった。

Talks on Jan. 25 in Switzerland between Froman, Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Toshimitsu Motegi, and Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi also failed to take any step forward other than confirming to continue bilateral cooperation toward an early conclusion of the TPP talks.
スイスで行われた25日の茂木経済産業相、林農相とフロマン代表の協議でも、早期合意への協力を確認しただけにとどまった。

As long as Tokyo and Washington continue to stick steadfastly to their respective “basic principles,” the two countries will have difficulty achieving a breakthrough in the stalled negotiations.
 日米が互いに原則論に終始するなら、難交渉を打開する糸口は見いだせまい。

Farming reform worthwhile

In his State of the Union speech on Jan. 28, U.S. President Barack Obama emphasized his resolve to work toward expansion of U.S. exports and employment, using the envisioned TPP pact as leverage. Obama may be intent on concluding TPP negotiations with the aim of realizing a full-scale recovery of the U.S. economy, thereby reviving his administration’s power base.
 オバマ米大統領は一般教書演説で、TPPをテコにした輸出と雇用拡大を目指す考えを強調した。本格的な景気回復を実現するとともに、政権の浮揚へ、TPPの決着を図りたいのではないか。

The Cabinet of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, for its part, has put weight on the TPP talks as part of its strategy to boost the national economy, in particular to tap the vigor of Asian economies.
 安倍政権も成長戦略としてTPPを重視し、アジアの活力を取り込む方針を掲げてきた。

It is obviously of high significance for Japan and the United States to beef up their cooperation as allies.
 日米が同盟国として連携を強める意義は大きい。

It is most urgent for the United States to aim for a meeting point with Japan from a broader perspective.
何よりも今、求められるのは、米国が大局的な見地から、日本との妥協点を探る姿勢を示すことである。

The TPP negotiations, which have lasted about four years, have mostly reached accords in fields such as measures for expediting trade and formulating rules in such areas as investments.
 約4年に及ぶTPP交渉は、すでに貿易円滑化や投資分野などのルール作りではほぼ合意した。

In addition to the Japan-U.S. conflicts over tariffs, however, the United States and emerging economies such as Malaysia have also remained far apart in such areas as protection of intellectual property rights and competition rules involving state-owned enterprises.
 しかし、関税撤廃を巡る日米対立に加えて、米国とマレーシアなど途上国の間でも、知的財産権保護や国有企業に関する競争政策を巡って主張の隔たりは大きい。

The 10 other TPP member countries are keeping a close eye on progress in the Japan-U.S. talks, and there are fears that negotiations in other areas could also be impeded if these talks remain stalled. We must avoid at all costs a situation that could destroy the momentum of the TPP negotiations as a whole, jeopardizing early conclusion of the talks.
 他の10か国は、日米協議の進展を注視しており、日米が対立を解消できなければ、他分野も停滞する恐れがある。交渉全体の勢いを失速させ、早期妥結を危うくする事態は避けるべきだ。

On the other hand, the Japanese government deserves praise for hammering out steps to reform the farming sector, such as integration of farming plots and a review of the conventional rice acreage reduction policy, in preparation for opening the farm sector further to international competition.
 一方、政府が農業分野の一層の市場開放に備えて、農地集積や減反見直しといった農業改革を打ち出している点は評価できる。

The government should waste no time in working out specific measures for encouraging Japan’s farming industry to “go on the offensive,” not only to deal with the TPP negotiations but also to ensure rejuvenation of the national economy.
 TPPなどの通商交渉への対応はもとより、日本経済を活性化させるため、「攻めの農業」の具体化を急がねばならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Feb. 3, 2014)
(2014年2月3日01時48分  読売新聞)

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