This thread contains excepts from the Japan Business Council in Europe (JBCE) and Keidanren (Japan Business Federation) joint statement on Brexit.

The full text can be found here:…
“A ‘no-deal’ Brexit remains the worst possible scenario. We strongly urge the EU and the UK to make the utmost effort to negotiate by putting the economy first so that any adverse impacts - not only on Europe but also on the global economy - be limited as much as possible.”
Transition period: "The entire EU acquis should remain in force in the UK such that all economic activities may be maintained under the status quo. Above all, this necessitates the UK's continued participation in the Single Market and the EU Customs Union."
"It is desirable that the period of transition be long enough to give both partners sufficient time to reach an agreement on a future relationship, and for businesses to prepare for the necessary operational changes."
Their threat: "Should the terms outlined above not be respected, businesses will be forced to implement contingency plans based on a “cliff edge” scenario."
"The continuity and stability of business activities is predicated on any agreement entering into force immediately after the end of the transition period. Both sides should remain open to the extension of the transition period if this condition cannot be achieved."
"We call on both parties to commit to achieving the broadest possible level of market access and maintaining tariff-free trade between the EU and the UK."
"We call on both parties to commit to securing simplified customs procedures and appropriate rules of origin (maintaining the
EU AEO system, and achieving cumulative rules of origin which can be extended to third country FTA partners)."
"We call on both parties to commit to securing regulatory coherence between the UK and the EU across as many economic sectors as possible, through specific arrangements including mutual recognition agreements or functional equivalence procedures."
"We call on both parties to commit to guaranteeing the validity of approvals, registrations, authorisations, licenses or any other kind of rights by introducing grandfathering measures for a time after the end of transition period."
The future of EU bilateral and multilateral agreements: “Measures are needed to extend the rights and obligations under bilateral agreements, including third country FTAs, and multilateral agreements concluded only by the EU to the UK during and after the period of transition.“
"If the EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement has entered into force before Brexit, we call upon the EU, the UK and Japan to take necessary measures so that all parties, including the UK, benefit from the agreement for the duration of the transition period."
Regarding a possible future Economic Partnership Agreement between the UK and Japan: “This should enter into force immediately after the end of the transition period. We will continue to closely follow the negotiations and express our views collectively or individually.”
And what does all that mean?
Basically, the Japanese will settle for little less than soft Brexit.
Their insistence on a rules of origin agreement and the UK continuing to be included in EU free trade agreements is impossible to achieve outside the SM and CU.
With that in mind, their comments about businesses being forced to "implement contingency plans" should be taken very seriously.
Especially in the North East.

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