25 and 27 January 2005


Further structural reforms can contribute to a sustained recovery

Since its previous Trade Policy Review, in 2002, Japan’s economic situation has improved, particularly compared with the previous decade of slow growth, according to a report on the trade policies and practices of Japan published by the WTO Secretariat.

Japan has introduced various measures aimed at further liberalizing its trade and investment regimes and progress has been made in improving the competitive environment, including in telecommunications and financial services. However, the use of contingency measures is somewhat more evident than before, and potentially important distortions to competition remain in some sectors particularly in agriculture.

The report says that a sustained recovery would appear to hinge on continued structural reforms, particularly with regard to: the financial and corporate sectors; competition policy; pensions; and agriculture. If implemented, these reforms would help restore business and consumer confidence, contributing to the sustainability of Japan’s economic recovery.

The WTO report, along with a policy statement by the Government, will be the basis for the Trade Policy Review (TPR) by the Trade Policy Review Body of the WTO.

The following documents are available in MS Word format.


Note  back to top

Trade Policy Reviews are an exercise, mandated in the WTO agreements, in which member countries’ trade and related policies are examined and evaluated at regular intervals. Significant developments that may have an impact on the global trading system are also monitored. For each review, two documents are prepared: a policy statement by the government of the member under review, and a detailed report written independently by the WTO Secretariat. These two documents are then discussed by the WTO’s full membership in the Trade Policy Review Body (TPRB). These documents and the proceedings of the TPRB’s meetings are published shortly afterwards.

Print copies of previous TPR publications are available for sale from the WTO Secretariat, Centre William Rappard, 154 rue de Lausanne, 1211 Genève 21 and through the on-line bookshop.

The TPR publications are also available from our co-publisher Bernan Press, 4611-F Assembly Drive, Lanham, MD 20706-4391, United States.


Schedule of forthcoming reviews  back to top

Sierra Leone: 9 February and 11 February 2005
Qatar: 21 February and 23 February 2005
Mongolia: 15 and 17 March 2005