Earthquakes Delay TPP Approval

In a recent article in the, Japan Times, the topic of a delayed approval by Japan’s legislature is explored. Due to the recent earthquakes in Kyushu, the Japanese Legislature has pushed back discussion on the TPP to deal with the current national crisis. Because the legislature is not planning to extend the the legislative session, this will delay the TPP approval discussions until parliament is reconvened.  Both of Japan’s majority parties will meet to discuss the best solution going forward, with respect to the TPP talks. How might this delay affect the current structure of the deal? How will this impact other TPP members?

An Experienced Ally

In a recent article in the Nikkei Asian Review, the subject of counterfeit goods under the TPP deal is discussed, specifically, goods that are produced and imported into Vietnam. Japan has stepped in to help Vietnam bolster their copyright protections and reduce the amount of ‘knockoff’ products. All of this is part of an effort to help emerging economies like Vietnam, comply with the new rules of intellectual property under the TPP. Japan also plans to help countries such as Malaysia. What can Japan do to help Vietnam? In what ways will this help Vietnam’s economy? In what ways may it hurt Vietnam’s economy?

Trouble Behind the Scenes

In a recent article in the HuffPost, side talks between the U.S. and Japan during crucial TPP negotiations is discussed. Japanese officials reported that they were under the impression that the U.S. was representing both Canada and Mexico. Canadian and Mexican officials disputed this fact and were upset by the Japanese assumption. The negotiations were to allow more Japanese auto parts into the North American auto industry. How may Japanese relations with Canada and Mexico be affected in the future? How may U.S. relations with Canada and Mexico be affected? How may Japanese and U.S. relations be affected?

Thailand to Enter TPP?

A recent article in, The Bangkok Post, Discusses Japanese Businesses efforts to persuade the Thai government to join the Trans Pacific Partnership. Their goal is to boost trade between Japan and Thailand under the new deal. Meeting with Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, the JCCI’s Akio Mimura and other top Japanese executives discussed the possibilities of Japan and Thailand cooperating in technology innovations and production. How may Japan benefit from Thailand’s inclusion in the TPP? How may Thailand benefit from the TPP? Will Thailand eventually become a member of the TPP?

“TPP CHIEF” Resigns

An article in, The Diplomat, discusses the repercussions that will come from the resignation of Minister Akira Amari. Amari was the principle politician that headed the Japanese plans for the TPP. He was responsible for Japan’s economic and fiscal policy under the Abe administration. Due to allegations that he and several of his aides received bribes of $100,000, Amari had no other choice to resign. While Amari still claims his innocence he feels that his presence and that of the current allegations would take away from all the progress being made with the new TPP deal. How may the resignation of Amari affect the long-term success of the TPP? Should Amari and his aides be investigated? How may the TPP and Japan benefit from his resignation?

Ford Withdraws from Japan

In a recent article in, The Japan Times, details about Ford’s decision to move out of the Japanese market was discussed. Poor market conditions were the main reason for the decision along with a bleak economic outlook. With the signing of the new TPP deal, of which Japan is a part of, Ford foresaw even tougher competition in its already uphill battle with domestic automobile manufacturers. Last year Ford only sold 5,000 cars in Japan. What negative results will Japan see with Ford pulling out of the automobile market? Where else may Ford be able to get a foothold in Asia? How does this affect Ford’s business going forward?

Projected Boost in Japanese Exports

In a recent article in The Japan Times, Japan is expected to see a 23% boost in exports. Most of this increase will come in the form of electronics. This a result of the TPP cutting 87% of tariffs on industrial products. Japan will also see a boost in agricultural exports specifically beef. How will this boost affect the importation of these products into Japan? How will this affect other countries domestic products? Where might Japan see a decrease in exports?