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3. Japan, US working to narrow gap in TPP talks

US negotiators may be ready to offer a key concession in the Trans-Pacific Partnership free-trade talks. They are reportedly willing to accept Japan's insistence on maintaining its tariffs on beef.

Officials from the 2 countries are holding working-level talks in Washington. They are trying to narrow their differences before top negotiators meet on Thursday.

Sources say US officials have shown their willingness to accept a certain level of tariffs on American beef.

They say the discussions include also keeping tariffs on some rice, wheat and sugar products.

But they say the US team of negotiators is urging that Japan to cut tariffs on pork to near zero.
Japan's minister in charge of TPP talks, Akira Amari, said negotiators have yet to reach a breakthrough on 5 key categories of agricultural products as well as automobiles.

He said he hopes they can reach an agreement during this week's meeting.
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