On 18 October, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe agreed to move quickly forward in ratifying the bilateral Economic Partnership Agreement. This free trade deal will be a strong driver of economic development between the two entities and completely remove 97% of tariff lines once the agreement is fully implemented. The ambitious chapters on sustainability and corporate governance demonstrate the importance given to core labour standards, corporate social responsibility, international environment agreements, the fight against corruption and transparency.
amfori is highly supportive to this deal. The ratification could still be concluded this year, allowing for the deal to come into force in the first half of 2019. At the same time, we cannot exclude delays given the – by now – usual polemic surrounding trade agreements and commercial policy.
Beyond the political level, amfori is also promoting dialogue on sustainability with business partners. For the first time, amfori will partner with the 3rd EU-Japan CSR Business Dialogue Meeting, which will take place on 23 November in Brussels. The forum will look at means to increase joint actions to enhance supply chain sustainability. While increasingly aware of sustainability developments, Japan is today a country with a low penetration rate of amfori BSCI and amfori BEPI.
Register now and join us for an EU-Japan discussion on responsible sourcing in Asian markets.