NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Economics and Politics of Rice Policy in Japan: A Perspective on the Uruguay Round

Yujiro Hayami, Yoshihisa Godo

NBER Working Paper No. 5341
Issued in November 1995
NBER Program(s):ITI

This paper reviews the recent problems of the opening of Japan's rice market and evaluates the Japanese government's rice policy from both an economic and political viewpoint. The Japanese government made strenuous resistance to the opening of Japan's rice market during the negotiations on agricultural trade at the GATT Uruguay Round. Eventually Japan's rice was made exempt from tariffication by compensating in the form of increased 'minimum access' import quotas. However, the tariffication rule of the final agreement guarantees that importing countries can impose considerably high tariffs. Thus, the volume of Japan's rice imports could be decreased if the Japanese government accepted the tariffication agreement. In retrospect the decisions made by the Japanese government have effectively protected the vested interests of the domestic rice distribution system, while hindering the structural improvement of the Japanese rice industry.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w5341

Published: Yujiro Hayami & Yoshihisa Godo, 1997. "Economics and Politics of Rice Policy in Japan: A Perspective on the Uruguay Round," NBER Chapters, in: Regionalism versus Multilateral Trade Arrangements, NBER-EASE Volume 6, pages 371-404 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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