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Brexit LIVE: Japan to slash tariffs on UK pork imports in Jan while EU must wait 12 YEARS

The two sides have been locked in negotiations since last month and are now expected to agree a deal which will outstrip parts of the Japan-EU agreement. Although Japan and the UK missed the deadline last month set by chief negotiator, Hiroshi Matsuura, a deal is now in sight after Tokyo agreed to slash import taxes on UK goods. International Trade Secretary, Liz Truss is expected to meet with her counterpart today in London to discuss the deal. It is understood Japan has agreed to reduce import taxes on UK bacon to seal a deal. While Japan will agree to reduce tariffs on pork imports within 12 years in its EU agreement, those tariffs could be dropped quicker than 12 years if a deal is agreed and ratified before January 1. 

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The two will also agree wider protections for Kobe beef and Scotch exports, better than what was included in the EU-Japan deal. 

Japanese officials have also indicated tariffs on automobiles and automobile parts could be removed. 

Trade minister Hiroshi Kajiyama said previously: “In the negotiations, we hope to urge Britain to bring forward the period for which tariffs will be removed mainly for autos and auto parts.”

According to The Sun, the future deal will also wipe out tariffs on British luxury leather goods while Japanese electric and car parts will be reduced in price. 

In light of this deal, the EU’s chief negotiator, Michel Barnier has indicated Brussels is willing to drop demands on state aid requirements. 

Mr Barnier has attempted to tie the UK into EU rules and regulations.

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Telling European diplomats, he indicated this demand could now be dropped to be replaced by an independent dispute-settling mechanism. 

One diplomat said: “There must be a solid framework with independent oversight.

“If they agree to settle on broad rules for granting state aid and to have this independent institution, then we have a deal.”

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Brexit Live: UK set to agree deal with Japan (Image: PA)

9.01am update: UK must agree comprimise on state aid 

The Daily Telegraph’s, Jeremy Warner has called on UK officials to agree a compromise on the issue of state aid. 

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State aid has remained one of the key areas of divergence as it dictates the assistance given to organisations by respective governments. 

The EU fears the UK could undercut the bloc by offering preferential aid to companies thus enticing them to Britain. 

In contrast, UK officials fear being tied to Eu regulations and rules. 

Warner wrote: “Understandably, ministers don’t want to tie their hands; the EU system is far too rigid, legalistic and open to manipulation by member states.

“We don’t want to end up agreeing a tougher regime than the EU itself practices.

“But regardless of the EU, commerce obviously does need some sort of a level playing field guarantee that it can be confident will be free of political interference.

“Is the Government really prepared to go to the barricades in defence of the right to do things that previous Tory administrations would have regarded as fundamentally unsound?”

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EU-UK negotiations (Image: Express)

8.41am update: EU rejects calls for new withdrawal agreement

Former Tory leader, Iain Duncan Smith had warned of the UK will be liable for £160billion of unpaid loans due to the withdrawal agreement. 

Due to the payments made by the European Investment Bank (EIB) and European Financial Stability Mechanism, the divorce payment could go far beyond the £39billion previously expected. 

However, EU Commsion spokesman, Eric Mamer has insisted the agreement will not be reworked. 

He said: “I think it’s very clear that we are not going to get into a debate with British politicians on liabilities or any other of the provisions of the withdrawal agreement.

“The withdrawal agreement is there, it is now a firm document that has been accepted by both parties and it is the basis on which both sides are acting.

“In this document it is clear that the UK has taken a certain number of completely normal legal commitments when it comes to its share of liabilities related to loans that would have been given by the EIB whilst the UK was still a member of the European Union.”

7.34am update: UK-Japan deal in sight 

A deal with Japan is now in sight after Tokyo agreed to drop import taxes on British pork and reduced prices for electrical and car manufacturing goods. 

International Trade Secretary, Liz Truss will meet with her counterpart today to thrash out an agreement. 

According to The Sun, she will hold talks minister Toshimitsu Motegi, while it is also understood British luxury leather will now no longer be taxed upon entering Japan. 

Source Daily Express :: UK Feed

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