Days after President Donald Trump accused Japan of devaluing its currency in order to gain an unfair trade advantage over the United States, the Pacific Rim nation now appears ready to significantly increase consumer ties with U.S. companies.
From an exclusive interview conducted by Reuters:
“Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is considering increasing energy imports from the United States, two sources familiar with the plan told Reuters, as he prepares to meet President Donald Trump, who has complained about Japan’s trade surplus.
“Japan is putting together a package of plans for Japanese companies to invest in infrastructure and job-creation projects in the United States for Abe to take to the Feb. 10 meeting with Trump in Washington.”
Citing a top Japanese business executive close to Abe, the news service writes that the prime minister’s major concern going forward is figuring out precisely what Trump is looking for.
“(Abe) wants to know what’s the most important thing for Trump,” the executive reportedly said, as quoted by Reuters. “If it is the trade surplus that Trump cares the most about, then we could come up with a few possible solutions.”
The source added that Abe’s approach to Trump will be “not accommodating, not opposing.”
As Anti-Media has reported, Trump’s nationalistic “America First” policy has put the U.S. in a tight spot in terms of international trade.
Many analysts are worried about the future of global markets, particularly in a world that’s appearing increasingly willing to conform to China’s push for economic globalization.
In fact, as recently as Tuesday, Donald Trump was accusing China, Japan, and Germany of currency manipulation.
“Every other country lives on devaluation,” he said while meeting with pharmaceutical executives at the White House. “You look at what China’s doing, you look at what Japan has done over the year. They — they play the money market, they play the devaluation market and we sit there like a bunch of dummies.”
Trump’s pulling of the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership was a major blow for Prime Minister Abe, who was hoping to strengthen ties between Pacific Rim nations and the United States.
Since Trump’s exit from the trade deal, many nations — including Abe’s Japan – have been left scrambling to come up with plans to keep the U.S engaged in their economies.
Now, days after a public rebuking from Trump in the headlines, Japan appears ready to increase its commitment to job creation and infrastructure in the U.S. — precisely the type of activity the “America First” policy seeks.
Whatever the results, however, many are pointing out how risky Trump’s behavior truly is. From a Wednesday article in the Financial Times:
“The Trump administration’s willingness to break from tradition and comment about currency valuations has raised fears that the US might lead the world into a new round of currency wars, angering and unnerving allies.”