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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

April 20, 2015 (AM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]


  • TPP ministerial-level consultations

REPORTER: The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) ministerial-level consultations between Japan and the United States are currently underway. While Minister Amari has indicated that it is unlikely that full agreement will be reached it is also the case that the Japan-U.S. summit meeting is due to be held in the near future. What degree of progress is the Government seeking to achieve in the current consultations?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Consultations between Minister Amari, who is responsible for TPP-related matters and U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman started last night and have continued again from this morning. These are extremely tough negotiations and the Government intends to engage fully to see if it is possible to close the gap between Japan and the U.S. on outstanding issues, based on national interests. In any event, with regard to difficult issues on which working-level discussions failed to reach agreement, the Government will continue to make every effort, based on national interests. That is all.


REPORTER: On an entirely different topic, it is being reported by some press organizations that the Government has issued a request to the Government of France to hand over Paul Watson, the founder of Sea Shepherd, who fled to France. Could you tell us the facts behind these reports?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Firstly, I am aware that the Japan Coast Guard has placed Paul Watson on an Interpol notice, charged with obstructing research whaling through the activities of the anti-whaling group Sea Shepherd. In any event it is my understanding that the relevant organizations will advance appropriate procedures, based on the law and evidence.


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