Japan and the European Union look set to ink a trade deal in Brussels in mid-July, the Nikkei Asian Review reported on 19 April. They expect it to come into force before the UK leaves the EU.
The European Commission, which implements EU decisions, aims to have the draft approved in late June, with the Japanese Cabinet endorsing it around the same time, ahead of the signing in July.
Ratification of the agreement should take place by the end of the year, and a later UK–Japan bilateral pact will be based on the EU–Japan deal, the report says.
It adds that having an EU–Japan pact in place ahead of the UK’s exit from the union would enable talks between Tokyo and London to begin sooner.