Surabaya (Indonesia):  Japan won its bid to enter talks on a massive Pacific trade pact on Saturday after winning over its last opponent, Canada, for a proposed agreement that would account for more than 40 percent of the global economy.
The decision became unanimous when Canada "successfully concluded" consultations with Japan after being the sole nation of 11 in the US-driven Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) that still opposed Tokyo's participation.
"These consultations have been informed by a robust and ongoing engagement with Canadian stakeholders, and it's that engagement that helped inform this process," Canadian Trade Minister Ed Fast said in a statement.
"We look forward to continuing to work together (with Japan) to deepen our trade and investment relationship in a manner that will generate significant benefits for hard-working people in both our countries."
Canada's approval came after bilateral talks on the sidelines of an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation trade ministers' meeting in the Indonesian city of Surabaya. Washington earlier this month gave Japan the thumbs-up for talks on the free-trade agreement despite opposition from Japanese farmers and some US labour groups and manufacturers
To allay concerns of higher competition in the US automotive industry, Japan, the world's third-largest economy, agreed that US tariffs on its cars would be phased out at the latest possible time allowed by a future accord.

President Barack Obama has championed the TPP as a way to boost the US economy through trade and to build a US-driven order in a fast-growing region where China -- which is not part of the talks -- is gaining clout.
Japan joins Australia, Brunei, Chile, Canada, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam in TPP negotiations.


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