American President Donald Trump will sign two trade agreements with Japan later on Monday, according to Reuters.
The U.S.-Japan Digital Trade Agreement and the U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement pacts will be signed at 19:30 GMT.
These deals are not comprehensive in scope but were heralded by both President Trump and Shinzo Abe, the Japanese Prime Minister at a signing ceremony in September during the meeting of the United Nations General Assembly ub New York last month.
The Trump administration has pursued a policy of economic confrontation with its biggest rival, China. In an attempt to lessen the significant trade deficit the United States has with the emerging superpower, tariffs duties have been increased significantly. China responded in kind with tariffs targeted to damage Trump’s political heartlands.
Japan has similarly experienced trading tensions in recent months. The ongoing dispute as to the legacy of the Japanese occupation of Korea has led to the trading relationship with South Korea deteriorating, last month Japan withdrew from a major security agreement.
Japan has attempted to counteract the dominance of China’s ‘Belt and Road’ initiative across Eurasia. Last week it signed an infrastrucure agreement with the European Union with an emphasis on sound economics and avoiding significant debt.
Relations between the United States and the EU on the other hand have been strained in recent weeks, with the Trump administration announcing tariffs on European cheese, wine and whisky, among other products.