06 Jul 2017

PRESS RELEASE - DIGITALEUROPE welcomes political agreement for EU-Japan FTA

PRESS RELEASE - DIGITALEUROPE welcomes political agreement for EU-Japan FTA

DIGITALEUROPE applauds the political agreement of the free trade deal between the European Union (EU) and Japan. By doing so, both partners have sent a strong signal in favour of free trade around the world. The agreement will also lead to a long-term GDP increase for the EU estimated to +0.76% and an increase of exports by +34% for the EU.

The EU-Japan FTA sets the new world global standard for trade agreements. It is now the most ambitious bilateral deal to date. We are convinced that the agreement will contribute to advancing the social agenda and improving the quality of people’s lives both in the EU and in Japan.

For the next milestone, DIGITALEUROPE also insists on the urgent need to include via the review clause an ambitious provision allowing for the free flow of data between both partners while respecting applicable legal frameworks for privacy and personal data protection.

DIGITALEUROPE also takes this opportunity to call on the EU and Japan to continue their joint leadership on global trade at the WTO, notably in reactivating the dormant discussions for the Trade in Services Agreement and the Environmental Goods Agreement, and to start already discussing the next steps for the Information Technology Agreement on non tariff barriers and services.

Last year under the Japanese leadership in Takamatsu, the EU and its Member States committed to promote the global nature of the Internet and the flow of information across borders. ‘There’s no trade in an online world without a global Internet. It is critical to ensure the functioning of Smart Industries and Internet of Things, and the interoperability of respective ICT policies such as the EU ‘Digital Single Market’ and Japan ‘Society 5.0’. Therefore we ask the same parties to pursue the same objectives as those agreed in 2016 at the G20 Leaders Summit this week, and at the next G7 ICT/Industry Ministerial in Turin on September 25-26’ said Director General of DIGITALEUROPE Cecilia Bonefeld Dahl.

Finally, we welcome the progress of the discussions on an adequacy decision with Japan. This exercise will help to better secure outbound data flows of EU citizens’ personal data to Japan. Both European and Japanese economy can prosper from the benefits associated with the free flow of data, built on strong data protection.

We are grateful to the Japanese government and to the European Commission for their continuing efforts in improving the global business environment. DIGITALEUROPE remains committed to collaborate with likeminded organisations and policy makers to ensure that the agreement will be approved and implemented in a timely manner.

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