EU, Japan seek political agreement on trade pact within this year

Thu May 26, 2016 6:30am EDT
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TOKYO May 26 (Reuters) - The European Union and Japan on Thursday reaffirmed their commitment to reaching a political agreement on a free trade deal as early as possible this year.

Both sides will aim to narrow the gaps during the summer before finalising key elements such as auto and agricultural tariffs and government procurement over the autumn, they said in a joint statement.

Negotiations on the trade deal have been ongoing since March 2013 with the most recent round taking place in Tokyo in April. (Reporting by Kylie MacLellan)