Trade: Japan Heads Off a Showdown

Japan Heads Off a Showdown

When Senator John Danforth of Missouri led a congressional delegation on a trip to Japan last month, he delivered a letter from 13 Senate colleagues to Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone and Michio Watanabe, the Japanese Minister of International Trade and Industry. In it was a blunt warning: "This would be an especially unfortunate time for Japan to further increase its auto imports to the U.S."

The message was apparently received. Last week the Japanese government announced that it would extend voluntary quotas on car exports to the U.S. for the sixth consecutive year. In the twelve months beginning with April, shipments...

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