U.S. Secretary of Commerce to visit Japan

WASHINGTON (Jiji Press) — U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo will visit Japan on Nov. 15, her first trip to the Asian nation since assuming office in March this year, the Department of Commerce said Sunday.

U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai will also visit Japan on the same day.

The two are expected to discuss with Japanese officials a possible review of the United States’ additional tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Japan, introduced by the administration of former U.S. President Donald Trump.

Furthermore, the U.S. side hopes to reaffirm its cooperation with Japan over measures to keep China in check in the field of economy.

The current administration led by President Joe Biden considers China its most serious competitor.

With China in mind, Biden announced after the end of the East Asia Summit last month his intention to consider building a new economic framework in the Indo-Pacific region.

The United States is urgently working to repair relations with its allies, which soured under the Trump administration, as it hopes to form a coalition against China in trade policies.

In late October, the United States and the European Union agreed to end their trade disputes, including those on steel and aluminum.

A focal point of Raimondo’s trip to Japan will be on whether there will be progress in the United States’ moves regarding the extra tariffs on Japanese steel and aluminum. On Thursday, Raimondo said, “We do want to work with our allies in Japan to resolve” the tariff issue.

After staying in Tokyo, Raimondo will visit Singapore for two days from Nov. 16, and then pay a visit to Malaysia on Nov. 18.