Sep 22, 2017 Last Updated 2:37 PM, Apr 10, 2017

AU official requests extension of AGOA framework

  • Dec 20, 2014
Published in Business

AFRICAN UNION (AU) officials have requested for extension of African Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA) framework in which African countries would be able to export their products to the US market duty free for another 15-20 years.
The request has come at the 12th African Growth Opportunity Act ministerial meeting on Monday, August 12, 2013 in Addis Ababa, under the theme “Sustainable Transformation through Trade and Technology”Enacted in 2000, the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) framework has enabled 39 African countries to export certain goods quota and duty-free into the United States, although 90 percent of the total goods has been crude oil.

 

Speaking at the 12th AGOA ministerial meeting in Addis Ababa, deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission Erastus Mwencha said the two- way trade has grown by 350 percent generating 350 thousand jobs and one million indirect jobs.

Africa’s energy and energy-related sectors continue to enjoy stable growth as non-oil product exports largely textile and apparel continue to surge recording total exports of US$ 4.8 billion in 2012, the chairperson noted stressing the significance of AGOA
Hence, he said, the extension of AGOA framework is important to enhance US investment, expand range of export products and promote political dialogue between the two sides.

“Extension of AGOA in time before September 2013 is important to avoid the type of setback Africa experiences with regard to the extension of the textile and apparel provisions. Also critical is the accompanying measures, namely first to enhance investment provisions so as to encourage US bound investments in Africa. And second expand the range of products to include agricultural products which Africa has a comparative advantage.” Says Erastus Mwencha, AUC Deputy Chairperson.

Erastus adds that African ministers met in closed session and strongly recommended that AGOA framework be expanded and include political dialogue and exchange high level visits between both sides.
Out of the 38 eligible African countries, Lesotho, South Africa, Botswana, Kenya, Swaziland, Senegal, Ghana, Nigeria, Gabon and Ethiopia which have been exporting crude oil and textile are among the countries that have relatively benefited better.

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