In his article "Trade: The Establishment's Game" {op-ed, Jan. 25}, Rep. Richard Gephardt cited the price difference of an Apple computer in the United States and Japan as an example of an "unfair trade practice." However, there is no unfair trade practice in the Apple computer case.

Japanese import duties for electronics products, including personal computers, are lower than or the same as those of the United States. There is neither a quota nor a discriminatory sales tax on any imported electronics product in Japan.

I bought an Apple Macintosh Plus for about $4,500 shortly before I came to this country two years ago. I'm sorry I bought a computer for twice what it's worth. However, there are some good reasons for that outrageous price in Japan:

1. Development of an operating system that handles the Japanese language is very costly. My Apple can handle Japanese as well as Chinese characters, which is a critical function for me as a Japanese. Also, on my keyboard Japanese characters are neatly printed in addition to the English alphabet.

2. In Japan, what kind of services are available is critical for successful marketing. Japanese consumers are willing to pay a premium for good services. My dealer visited my office for a demonstration and provided me with some free training courses. Home delivery on my day off was free of charge, something I could not expect in the United States.

3. There is also economy of scale. Although Apple computer has been very successful in the Japanese market since it launched its Japanese version, its sales volume in Japan is still far less than that in the home market. It is unfair and illogical to compare prices in a huge, established market with those in a small, growing market.

Unfair trade practices should be eliminated. However, it is very dangerous to judge a foreign country without careful study.