15th BRT Annual Meeting – Paris, 29 & 30 April 2013:
"OPENING A NEW CHAPTER IN EU-JAPAN RELATIONS"
The 15th annual EU-Japan Business Round Table (BRT) meeting took place at the French Ministry of Foreign & European Affairs on 29 & 30 April. It was co-chaired by Jean-Yves Le Gall, President of CNES (Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales) and former Chairman & CEO of Arianespace, and Osamu Nagayama, Chairman and CEO of Chugai Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.
At the meeting, the BRT Members (CEOs / senior executives from leading EU and Japanese firms) discussed and adopted general and sectoral recommendations to be submitted to the EU and Japanese Authorities. They held detailed discussions on the approaching negotiations on a deep and comprehensive Free Trade Agreement/Economic Partnership Agreement between the EU and Japan; on EU-Japan cooperation including business with/in emerging economies and on resources issues. The BRT also held a joint session with senior representatives of the Japanese and EU Authorities.
On 05 June 2013, Hiromasa Yonekura, BRT co-Chairman and Chairman of Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd., and Osamu Nagayama, Chairman & CEO of Chugai Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., who acted as co-chairman for the BRT Annual Meeting 2013, delivered the Recommendations to Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on 05 June 2013. The BRT issued a press release about the handover on the same day.
The handover was reported on the official website of the Prime Minister of Japan and His Cabinet in both English and Japanese and a video recording of the formal handover is available.
Handover photos © courtesy of Cabinet Secretariat, Cabinet Public Relations Office
The 21st EU-Japan Summit was held in Tokyo on 19 November 2013 and brought together Mr. Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, Mr. Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council, and Mr. José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission.
On 15 November 2013, the BRT submitted a Joint Statement to the Summit Leaders entitled "Strengthening the EU-Japan Economic Partnership".
In the Joint Press Statement issued by the Summit Leaders at the end of the Summit, the Summit leaders addressed the work of the BRT (paragraph 39 of the Statement):
Summit leaders recognised the important contribution of the Japan-EU Business Round Table (BRT) to the development of bilateral economic relationships, and reaffirmed their determination to continue cooperation with the business communities on both sides, notably through the BRT, in order to strengthen relations further. They welcomed the recommendations adopted by the BRT in April that stated that a deep and comprehensive Japan-EU EPA/FTA should be completed as early as possible, recognizing that the BRT "reiterates its call that the resulting EU-Japan FTA / EPA should be ambitious, balanced, mutually-beneficial, comprehensive, and tackle major outstanding issues", which include tariffs, non-tariff measures, procurement, investment, services, competition, IPR, regulatory cooperation including harmonisation and the mutual recognition of regulations and standards to boost Japan-EU trade and investment and promote job creation and economic growth in both economies.