August 19, 2019
TPP expands Japan's beef import variety, breaks US and Australia's dominance
The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) has expanded the variety of beef imports entering the Japanese market, the Yomiuri Shimbun reported.
An increase in these products is seen especially in those coming from Canada and New Zealand. Upon coming into effect, the TPP has paved the way for beef tariffs to be cut in stages to 9%.
In addition, with the suspensions on imports from South American nations lifted, these countries are also helping to shape the profile of Japan's beef imports.
By increasing the volume, South American beef can be imported at lower prices than that from the United States and Australia. Imports from South America are expected to show growth gradually.
Outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease previously caused the import of Uruguayan and Argentinean beef to be banned.
The TPP, the Yomiuri Shimbun noted, has effectively broke the beef import dominance exerted by both the US and Australia, which accounted for 90% of the total. The US' withdrawal from the agreement also means a missed opportunity for its beef exporters.
Canada and New Zealand now joins in the competition and had witnessed their prices declined after tariffs on their beef fell from 38.5% to 26.6% starting in April due to the TPP. Furthermore, the quality of Canadian beef is regarded at a similar level with the US.
According to trade statistics of Japan's Finance Ministry, the import volume in January-June this year was 17,303 tonnes, up 93% from the same period last year. Imports of New Zealand beef, known for its high lean content, rose 46% to 10,097 tonnes.
- The Japan News