14 Apr 2014

Progress expected in Japan trade talks

9:03 am on 14 April 2014

The Trade Minister is confident agricultural trade negotiations with Japan will progress when the United States president heads to Tokyo later this month to further Trans Pacific Partnership talks.

Tim Groser.

Tim Groser. Photo: AFP

Last week, Australia secured a bilateral deal to halve Japan's tariffs on beef products over 18 years to about 19 percent.

Trade Minister Tim Groser says Australia's agreement is only modestly ambitious and not at all what New Zealand and the United States are wanting for agricultural exports.

Mr Groser says the United States will be able to do better than the Australian deal with Japan, and New Zealand is part of a bigger trade picture, involving several countries.

"So all of the other countries have told the United States what I have told the United States - which is; you be very careful here. We encourage you to do this deal because you are the people with the leverage but you have to remember it cannot just be made in Washington for Washington because we can't accept that."