Japan-India accord should lead to more EPAs

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Sep. 22, 2010)
Japan-India accord should lead to more EPAs
日印EPA 出遅れ挽回の確かな一歩に(9月21日付・読売社説)

An economic partnership agreement with India likely will give Japanese businesses a boost in such industries as automobiles and home electronic appliances in the huge Indian market, which has been growing rapidly.
 急成長している巨大市場インドで、自動車や電機などの日本企業がビジネスを拡大する追い風になろう。

Japan and India broadly agreed earlier this month to sign an EPA. A formal agreement is expected to be made when Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh visits Japan in October.
 日本とインドの経済連携協定(EPA)交渉が大筋合意した。インドのシン首相が10月に来日し、正式合意する予定だ。

The agreement is the first of its kind to be made under the Democratic Party of Japan-led government and will make India the 12th nation or region with which this country has an EPA. Coming as it did after four years of difficult negotiations, the broad agreement is of particular significance.
 民主党政権としては初めての合意で、日本のEPAは12か国・地域目となる。4年越しの難交渉がまとまった意義は大きい。

The key point in the agreement is that the two nations will gradually lower tariffs on goods that account for 94 percent of the value of their exports, and eliminate the tariffs in 10 years.
 日印両国の貿易額の94%に当たる品目について、関税を10年間で段階的に引き下げて、撤廃することが大筋合意のポイントだ。

The tariffs imposed by India on Japan's major export items, such as auto parts and steel, range from 7.5 percent to 10 percent. Japan would benefit greatly from their elimination.
 日本の主要輸出品である自動車部品や鉄鋼などに対するインドの関税は約7・5%~10%と高く、撤廃のメリットは大きい。

Japanese manufacturers with production bases in India also could reduce the procurement costs of parts from Japan and other items.
インドで現地生産する日本メーカーも、日本からの部品などの調達コストを削減できよう。

The EPA also includes an agreement to ease restrictions on investment in India. We hope Japanese companies seize this chance by carefully crafting strategies for the construction of local factories and expanded investment in plants and equipment.
 インドでの投資規制を緩和する協定も盛り込まれた。日本企業は現地工場の建設や、設備投資の拡大などで戦略を練り、チャンスを生かしてほしい。

Highly attractive market

The Indian market is particularly appealing. The nation has a population of 1.2 billion people and its economy continues to register 9 percent annual growth. The number of middle-income households who purchase such products as automobiles and home electronic appliances is rapidly growing, and there has been strong demand for social infrastructure such as railroads and electric power.
 インド市場の魅力は、12億人の人口を抱え、約9%の高成長が続いていることだ。自動車や家電などを購入する中間所得層が急増し、鉄道や電力などのインフラ(社会基盤)整備の需要も旺盛だ。

Prime Minister Naoto Kan's administration has expressed its intention to incorporate the vigor of Asia and other regions in its new growth strategy. In line with this policy, the EPA between Japan and India is expected to strengthen Japanese companies' competitiveness and expand infrastructure exports.
 菅政権は、アジアなどの活力を取り込む新成長戦略を掲げている。日印EPAはその戦略に沿い、インドでの日本企業の競争力を強化したり、インフラ輸出を拡大したりする効果が期待される。

But South Korea, which has been aggressively promoting EPAs, already put one with India into effect in January. Under this bilateral agreement, tariffs on many items are set to be abolished in five to eight years, a faster pace for opening up the Indian market than the one established in the Japan-India pact.
 ただ、EPA戦略に積極的な韓国は今年1月、インドとのEPA協定を発効済みだ。韓印協定では5年から8年で関税を撤廃する品目が多く、インドの市場開放のペースは日本との協定より速い。

The Japan-India EPA will alleviate some of the disadvantages Japanese companies face against their South Korean rivals. But we must keep an eye on the competitiveness of South Korean companies.
 韓国企業に比べて日本企業が強いられている不利な状況は、少しは改善されるが、韓国勢の競争力は依然、要警戒だ。

Compromise needed

India has asked Japan to accept Indian nurses and other workers, but Japan has resisted making a specific decision on this matter. To deepen economic partnerships between this country and India, Japan should make concessions.
 インドが日本に要求した看護師などの受け入れは、日本の抵抗で具体策が先送りされた。両国の経済連携を深めるため、日本が譲歩すべきだろう。

Japan has fallen behind other nations in its EPA strategy. Negotiations with South Korea have been suspended, and talks with Australia have run into difficulty as Japan is resisting opening its agricultural market.
 日本はEPA戦略で出遅れている。韓国との交渉は中断し、農業分野での市場開放に日本が抵抗する豪州との交渉は難航している。

There are no prospects even for the start of negotiations with the United States and the European Union.
米国や欧州連合(EU)との交渉は開始のメドすらたたない。

To help Japan catch up, the government aims to devise basic guidelines on the EPA by November. We urge the government to include measures to open the agriculture sector, which has always been the bottleneck in negotiations. Without this, there will be no progress.
 政府は挽回(ばんかい)を目指し、11月までにEPAの基本方針を策定する。常に交渉のネックとなる農業分野について、開放の方針を盛り込むべきだ。それなくして、今後のEPA交渉の進展は望めない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 21, 2010)
(2010年9月21日01時14分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2010-09-22 06:23 | 英字新聞

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