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Japan is cautiously encouraging Trump on TPP

Suga speaks with Abe
Suga and Abe pictured in 2017. Photo: Kyodo News via Getty Images
"With regard to the reported comment by the President, if his reported instruction is something that reflects President's understanding of the significance and effects of TPP, I would welcome this ... At the same time, the basic stance of the GOJ to make every effort to realize the early ratification of the TPP11 remains the same."
— Yoshihide Suga, Japan's chief cabinet minister, to reporters in Tokyo

The backdrop: A top Japanese diplomat told Axios earlier this week that Tokyo "would welcome the U.S. anytime back to TPP," but the Japanese government was frustrated when the U.S. left the TPP last year. President Trump tweeted on Thursday that Japan, a close ally, "has hit us hard on trade for years."

Haley Britzky 6 hours ago
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The E.U. and U.K. want to be front and center on AI research

Theresa May visits an engineering facility.
Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May visits an engineering training facility in Birmingham. Photo: Andrew Yates/AFP/Getty Images

The E.U. and U.K. both announced major investments in artificial intelligence research this week, with more than 50 tech companies contributing to a £1 billion deal in the U.K., and the European Commission announcing it would be allocating €1.5 billion to AI research until 2020.

The big picture: The U.K.'s deal, as detailed in a government press release, will include funding for "8,000 specialist computer science teachers, 1,000 government-funded AI PhDs by 2025," and development for a "prestigious global Turing Fellowship" program to attract top talent. Per the release, the U.K. will also be developing "a world-leading Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation," to emphasize ethical standards with AI research. The E.U.'s deal also includes laying out clear ethical guidelines by the end of 2018.

Mike Pompeo’s first foreign trip

Mike Pompeo
CIA Director Mike Pompeo testifies on worldwide threats. Photo: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

If he is confirmed as Secretary of State tomorrow, Mike Pompeo will embark on his first foreign trip as secretary to Brussels for the NATO Summit, Axios has learned. Bloomberg first reported the contingency planning for the potential trip.

The details: “The acting secretary John Sullivan is ready to go to the NATO summit in Brussels Thursday,” a senior administration official told Axios. “The secretary-designate Mike Pompeo is prepared to travel to the meeting of foreign ministers to reaffirm our commitment to NATO and coordinate the alliance’s response to Russian aggression.”

Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect the latest developments.