The agreement “provides more flexibility for Japanese and British companies” to transfer talent to each country, covering a number of British professionals for entry to Japan, from IT services to construction. This includes a commitment that visa requirements will be “clear, transparent and with the aim of being dealt with in 90 days.” Japan has expanded the scope of the ICT category and investor definitions have been modified to focus on investment as an activity and not on the amount of capital invested. Transfers from Japan to the UK are already subject to internal transfer rules, which will be improved in January as part of the delivery of the UK immigration system in 2021. The UK Youth Mobility Programme already covers Japan. The agreement also allows the UK to request up to seventy other geographical indications for its products, in addition to the seven currently available to the UK under the EU-Japan EPA. These geographical indications are used to protect products originating in designated areas in the United Kingdom and Japan from unauthorized replication. Scotch whisky, Kobe beef and other local dishes are examples of products that receive such a name. The EU-Japan EPA also provides for these geographical denominations; however, the UK will now be able to benefit more. The House of Commons International Trade Committee (ITC) and the House of Lords Subcommittee on International Agreements have both published reports on the agreement. The ITC welcomed the signing of the agreement and the security and continuity that results.
The commission stated: “While the differences between the EPA and JEEPA may not be as significant as claimed, there are notable exceptions, particularly the numerical data and data and financial services provisions.” The committee recommended that the agreement be debated in the House of Commons. Under product-specific rules, it will also be easier for British bread and biscuits (as well as some textiles) to qualify for duty-free trade, as Japan-UK provisions involve fewer restrictions on where they can buy biscuit ingredients than the EU-Japan agreement. A chapter on a national settlement in the trade agreement sets out the principles and disciplines to which both parties comply to ensure that measures relating to qualification requirements and procedures, technical standards and licensing requirements and procedures are not unnecessary barriers to trade in services.