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Japanese Leader Discusses Trade, Russia, with Bush, Quayle

June 6, 1992

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Vice President Dan Quayle has reminded a top Japanese political leader that a growing trade deficit with Japan could become an election issue in the United States.

Quayle’s office also confirmed Friday that the vice president and Shin Kanemaru agreed on the importance of U.S.-Japan relations in continuing talks begun during Quayle’s visit to Tokyo last month.

Kanemaru, vice president of Japan’s governing Liberal-Democratic Party, met Thursday with President Bush, who reaffirmed U.S. backing of Japanese efforts to recover small islands north of Hokkaido occupied by the Soviet Union since the end of World War II.

Bush said the United States would be glad to raise the issue at his June summit with Russian President Boris Yeltsin, said Japanese press officer Yayoi Matsuda.

Japan’s trade deficit has been a growing concern in the United States.

Several House Democrats are sponsoring legislation that would force the Bush administration to link continued low duties on Japanese goods to annual reduction of the trade deficit with Japan. The trade deficit peaked at $59.8 billion in 1987 and fell to $41 billion in 1990 before beginning a slow climb.

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