July 17, 2018 / 6:48 AM / 3 months ago

Japan finmin Aso considering visit to NZ after G20 gathering: sources

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso is considering visiting New Zealand after attending a Group of 20 finance leaders’ gathering on July 21-22, government sources said on Tuesday.

FILE PHOTO: Japan's Finance Minister Taro Aso attends an upper house parliamentary session in Tokyo, Japan March 19, 2018. REUTERS/Issei Kato - RC1BD037BC50

The visit would come at a time when G20 counterparts of the United States grapple with the potential fallout from escalating frictions between Washington and its trading partners.

Aso, who is also deputy prime minister, will meet New Zealand’s acting Prime Minister Winston Peters during the visit and return to Japan on July 25, the sources said on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to speak publicly.

New Zealand is a strong advocate of free trade, and pushed hard with Japan for renegotiating a Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal after U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to pull the United States out.

Reporting by Yoshifumi Takemoto, Writing by Leika Kihara; Editing by Shri Navaratnam

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