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U.S., Japan to agree on subsidy rules on chips, batteries with China in mind

TOKYO — The U.S. and Japanese governments will agree on new subsidy rules for strategic goods such as semiconductors, storage batteries and permanent magnets as the partners keep an eye on China, Nikkei has learned.

Countries sometimes implement subsidies when their trading partners ship products at unjustifiably low prices. Japan and the U.S. now intend to establish common criteria for when subsidies are appropriate. These might include decarbonization goals and ensuring a stable supply of components.

International rules will be created through policy coordination among like-minded countries, including those in Europe, to strengthen economic security, including supply chains for strategic goods. The rules also will aim to avoid situations in which Japan, the U.S. and European countries compete in adopting protectionist policies under the pretext of lessening their dependence on China.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and U.S. President Joe Biden will meet in Washington on April 10, when they will issue a joint statement touching on the subsidy partnership. A ministerial dialogue will also be created to develop rules, such as requirements for decarbonization subsidies. Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Ken Saito and U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo will participate.

Source: Nikkei Asia