The Economic Partnership Agreement Between the European Union and Japan: A Comparative Analysis with Focus on the Quality Standards in the Agri-Food Sector
Proceedings of the IX International Agricultural Symposium, AGROSYM 2018
11 Pages Posted: 29 May 2019
Date Written: October 10, 2018
In 2013, the European Union (EU) initiated negotiations for an Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with Japan, one of the largest economies in the world and a key trading partner. After 18 rounds of negotiations, both partners agreed on the principles and implementation of this Free Trade Agreement (FTA) on 6 July 2017. The final EU-Japan agreement is expected to enter into force at the beginning of 2019 and will give both economies a major boost, lowering tariffs and trade barriers as well. Primarily, it will open new markets for agri-food export. Moreover, it is another strong example of the global supply chain matters and the sharing of values and interests. This study outlines the current situation of quality standards used in the EU and Japan. Japan, as well as the EU, have their own regulatory schemes applied to labeling, certification and trade in the agri-food sector. The purpose of this study is to investigate the differences between their standards and gain more insight into their similarities. The research has three major objectives. Firstly, the food safety regulations of the EU and Japan will be discussed more detailed. Secondly, the primary investigation of this paper is to compare those food safety standards and focus on their equivalency issues. Finally, the study insists on the necessity of understanding the importance of the emerging issues from food safety equivalency in relation to trade between the EU and Japan. Thus, the main research question, namely, till what extent are the food safety standards between the EU and Japan equivalent, will be answered and analyzed in this paper.
Keywords: agri-food industry, food safety, quality standards, EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), Free Trade Agreement (FTA)
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