The UK-Japan Free Trade Agreement (FTA) will make it easier for UK clothing manufacturers to export to Japan, according to the UKFT. In particular, the FTA will allow clothing producers to undergo a single process in the UK and then export to Japan under tariff preference, as long as 50 per cent of the inputs are sourced domestically, the association said.
“This is a positive change from the EU-Japan deal which required several processes to take place in order to confer origin. The FTA also allows for a more streamlined process to register design right protection in Japan and customs provisions that aim to minimise costs and administrative burdens,” UKFT said while commenting on the in-principle deal recently agreed between the UK and Japan governments.
The UK-Japan FTA has to be signed and the final text has yet to be seen but in many ways the UK-Japan deal will be a replica of the EU-Japan deal. The FTA will see tariffs eliminated or reduced and will also see a new, more beneficial, rules of origin regime.
The present MFN tariff of 9.1 per cent on UK trousers and coats will decrease to zero while exporting to Japan when the FTA enters into force. Leather footwear, which currently attracts 21.6 per cent while exporting to Japan, will see the duty reduce to zero from 2028 onwards.
Japan is the UK fashion and textile industry’s third largest export market after the EU and the US. For many brands, especially those manufacturing in the UK, Japan is the number one export market and the first market to buy their products.
Fibre2Fashion News Desk (RKS)