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Japan Matters To Canada: Our Government’s Re-Engagement In Asia Is Good News For Canadian Business

Canadian Chamber Report
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce welcomes the announcement by the Government of a Canada-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA). “Canada and Japan have largely complementary economies. Greater effective market access through an Economic Partnership Agreement could yield economic gains for both countries,” said Perrin Beatty, President and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. He added: “This visit and this announcement highlight the strong relations between our two countries. They demonstrate Canada’s re-engagement in Asia, and that is great news for the Canadian business community.”

Japan is a highly developed, sophisticated market and represents a major opportunity for Canadian produced goods and services. It remains the world’s third largest economy and Asia’s second, just behind China. Canada and Japan are important trade partners, but the value of two-way trade and investment has not moved much in a decade. There are significant barriers to real market access that hamper Canadian companies and limit the Canada-Japan partnership. An EPA, if it is of the right quality, would dismantle those barriers and revitalize commercial ties.

An EPA with Japan, provided it achieves real market access for Canadian goods and services, would revitalize our economic ties and be a good step forward in moving Canada’s business presence in the Asia-Pacific region forward.

In late 2011, Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced that Canada was considering joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a group that aims to deliver a trade and investment framework for the Asia-Pacific region. Some countries seem reluctant to letting Canada in the door. This EPA with Japan will guarantee our commercial presence in the Pacific region while we continue the TPP negotiations.

In November 2011, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce published a report highlighting the benefits of enhanced Canada-Japan relations and what a successful Canada-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement could achieve. Canada-Japan: Revitalizing the economic Partnership can be found here.

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce is the vital connection between business and the federal government. It helps shape public policy and decision-making to the benefit of businesses, communities and families across Canada with a network of over 420 chambers of commerce and boards of trade, representing 192,000 businesses of all sizes in all sectors of the economy and in all regions. News and information are available at Chamber.ca or follow us on Twitter @CdnChamberofCom.