Angling to pre-empt complaints over Japan's perennial trade surplus with the U.S., Prime Minister Shinzo Abe reportedly plans to propose a sweeping economic cooperation initiative meant to create hundreds of thousands of jobs in the U.S. when he meets with President Donald Trump later this month.
Abe and Trump are expected to meet on Feb. 10. Major Japanese newspapers cited a draft of the proposal that calls for cooperation on building high-speed trains in the U.S. northeast, Texas and California. Japan would share technology on artificial intelligence, robotics, small-scale nuclear power plants, space and Internet technology.
The reports Thursday said the proposed public-private initiative would create several hundred thousand jobs, reports said, and involve $450 billion in new investment.
The government pension fund may invest in the projects, the reports said.
Asked about the reported package, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told reporters Tuesday that nothing definitive has been decided for talks between the two leaders.
"We hope to have constructive talks in order to seek how we can forge a mutually win-win relationship," Suga said. He did not deny the report, but only added that any decision on involvement by the Government Pension Investment Fund would be based on whether it would benefit those covered by the fund.
Other officials did not immediately respond to questions on details of the proposed package.