May 20, 2019 / 3:10 AM / 5 months ago

USTR Lighthizer to meet Motegi for trade talks in Japan on May 24: sources

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer testifies before House Ways and Means Committee hearing on "U.S.-China Trade” on Capitol Hill in Washington U.S., February 27, 2019. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque/Files

TOKYO (Reuters) - U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer will visit Japan on May 24 to meet with Economy Minister Toshimitsu Motegi to accelerate trade talks ahead of a summit meeting scheduled a few days later, two sources with direct knowledge of the plan said on Monday.

After a late-April meeting between President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Trump had said it was possible for the two countries to reach a new bilateral trade deal by the time he visits Tokyo in late May.

On Friday, Trump angered foreign automakers including Toyota Motor Corp by declaring that some imported vehicles and parts posed a national security threat, while delaying a decision for as long as six months on whether to impose tariffs to allow more time for trade talks with the European Union and Japan.

Reporting by Yoshifumi Takemoto; Writing by Chang-Ran Kim; Editing by Chris Gallagher

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