President Samia Wants AGOA trading Period extended for Five More Years

President Samia Suluhu Hassan wants an early renewal of the African Growth and Opportunity Act, in order to extend for five more years to at least 2030.

President Samia says the extended period will allow Tanzania and other African countries to increase their exports to the U.S. market.

The Tanzanian Head of State recently made the appeal for AGOA extension before the Vice President of the United States, Kamala Harris who was recently in the country during her African tour.

Initially, AGOA a pact hatched at the turn of the new Millennium in 2000, was to expire in 2008.

However, the United States Congress passed the AGOA Acceleration Act of 2004, a move which extended the legislation to 2015.

The Act has since been extended by 10 years from 2015 to 2025.

Now President Samia wants five more years of AGOA to 2030.

The African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) is a trade act created by the United States to help the countries of sub-Saharan Africa increase their access to U.S. markets in order to improve trade.

Coming to America

The Act can help producers in Africa ship their products to the United States duty-free.

There is no required size for a company in order to be eligible, and there is no minimum product requirement in order to receive The African Growth and Opportunity Act treatment on products.

The legislation authorized the President of the United States to determine which sub-Saharan African countries would be eligible for AGOA on an annual basis.

The eligibility criteria were to improve labor rights and movement toward a market-based economy. Each year, the President evaluates the sub-Saharan African countries and determines which countries should remain eligible.

Meanwhile President Samia Suluhu Hassan said Tanzania and the United States have signed several agreements to deepen and broaden economic cooperation between the two countries as a result of the historic visit of U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris to Tanzania.

The President said the agreements focus on USAID assistance to Tanzania, port cooperation, commercial dialogue and information and communication technology.

“On USAID assistance through the Development Objectives Agreement (DOAG), the United States will commit USD 1.3 billion to finance various socio-economic programmes in Tanzania,” President Samia stated recently.

US Vice President Harris said the Export-Import Bank of the United States will sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Tanzania to facilitate up to USD 500 million in U.S. exports to Tanzania.

These cover transportation, infrastructure, digital technology and clean energy projects in order to boost trade between the two countries.

AGOA Facts and Figures

  • Total two-way goods trade between the United States and sub-Saharan Africa increased 5.8%, from $36.9 billion in 2015 to $39 billion in 2017
  • Top US goods exports to sub-Saharan Africa:  machinery ($2.3 billion), vehicles ($1.6 billion), aircraft ($1.5 billion), mineral fuels ($1.4 billion), and electrical machinery ($864 million)
  • Top US export markets in the region:  South Africa ($5 billion), Nigeria ($2.2 billion), Ghana ($886 million), Ethiopia ($873 million), and Angola ($810 million)
  • Top US imports from sub-Saharan Africa:  oil ($11.2 billion), precious metals ($4.1 billion), cocoa ($1.2 billion), vehicles ($1.2 billion), and iron and steel ($950 million)
  • Top sub-Saharan African suppliers to the United States were South Africa ($7.8 billion), Nigeria ($7.1 billion), Angola ($2.6 billion), Cote d’Ivoire ($1.2 billion), and Botswana ($772 million).
  • US investment in sub-Saharan Africa stood at $29 billion in 2016, the latest year available, down 23% compared to $37.5 billion in 2014.  The three largest destinations for U.S. investment were Mauritius ($6.7 billion), South Africa ($5.1 billion) and Nigeria ($3.8 billion).
  • Sub-Saharan Africa foreign direct investment in the U.S. stood at $4.2 billion in 2016, up 164% compared to $1.6 billion in 2014.

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