Tag Archives: African Growth and Opportunity Act
African Growth and Opportunity Act: Latest News
Staff, 1:01 am
The U.S. did not have a trade policy for Africa when Rosa Whitaker went to work for the U.S. State Department. U.S. policy was to view Africa as a charity case. Whitaker helped draft AGOA, the law gives duty-free access to the U.S. for African countries meeting eligibility requirements on human rights, rule of law and labor standards. With AGOA, the whole narrative changed, Whitaker said. “We no longer saw Africa as benefactors of charity. We were able to substitute paternalism with partnership.” The U.S. had trade representatives for every other region of the world except Africa. President Bill Clinton did not wait for AGOA to be passed before appointing Whitaker assistant trade representative for Africa.
Opinion: Trump’s ‘America First’ Policy An Opportunity For China To Access AGOA, US Markets By Manufacturing In AfricaBy Dana Sanchez, 9:52 am
The main target of Trump’s America First policy is China, the world’s top industrial exporter. China has positioned itself as the world’s factory. Africa does very little trade with the U.S. and is no threat to U.S. jobs. Because China is Africa’s biggest export market, the America First policy will hurt Africa. The export-oriented China creates wealth by exporting manufactured goods to the U.S. and other Western markets. China can circumvent Trump’s efforts by relocating some of its manufacturing to Africa to take advantage of AGOA and access the U.S. market through Africa.
Staff, 12:12 am
Trade deals criticized as harmful to U.S. economic interests have emerged as a key issue in the race for the White House. Trump could include AGOA as part of a general offensive against U.S. trade agreements. A threat to the program will more likely come from unfair competition on the part of the European Union. African regional trade blocs are in talks with the E.U. on deals that would allow E.U. goods to enter the continent duty-free.
Dana Sanchez, 2:46 pm
You won’t find U.S. chicken in South African locations of the mega chicken restaurant chain Nando’s, the company said Wednesday — proof that controversy hasn’t subsided over U.S. chicken exports and the African Growth and Opportunity Act. Nando’s does most of its business outside South Africa and is the largest collector of South African contemporary art, displaying it in its restaurants. “Nando’s is proudly South African,” said CEO Geoff Whyte.
Dana Sanchez, 2:20 pm
Many in the U.S. are tired of one-way trade preferences to Africa without reciprocal access for U.S. goods. “It’s time to start looking at what comes next,” said the U.S. Trade Representative at the World Economic Forum. Regional integration could play a role. “Part of what motivates us is that we are hearing from Africans that they want to move towards a more permanent, reciprocal kind of relationship.” South Africa risked losing its AGOA benefits over U.S. chicken, which finally hit SA shelves for the first time in 15 years.
Dana Sanchez, 1:58 pm
Before the AGOA renewal, stakeholders worried about adverse effects U.S. chicken imports would have on black businesses. Under the trade agreement, South Africa is obliged to import 65,000 tonnes of chicken from the U.S. a year, half of which can be distributed by black-owned businesses. While AGOA is a nonreciprocal and unilateral agreement, there are strings attached. AGOA eligibility dictates that barriers to U.S. trade and investment be removed.
Dana Sanchez, 11:39 am
Negotiators have reached settlements on issues including bird flu certificates and pork safety. Outstanding issues involve salmonella and cattle not born in the U.S. If South Africa’s AGOA access is suspended, duties are expected to take effect immediately upon the announcement. That means South African goods in transit to the U.S. could face tariffs on arrival. Talks are continuing between the two countries.
Dana Sanchez, 3:04 pm
AGOA is a non-reciprocal trade benefit scheme, however, to view it as an act of pure altruism on the part of the U.S. is simply incorrect. Bone-in chicken cuts are almost considered by the U.S. as waste products. Poultry farmers in the U.S. are heavily subsidized. These two things mean U.S. bone-in chicken can be exported cheaply, and South Africans have the option to buy it at a third of the cost of South African chicken.
Dana Sanchez, 12:55 am
Senior U.S. officials will travel to Gabon to talk trade and investment with 39 AGOA member countries, business leaders, entrepreneurs, civil society members, and the private sector. The Forum will feature “Doing Business in America” workshops and a trade exhibit where African entrepreneurs can network and show their products. New AGOA legislation calls for promoting the role of African women in social and economic development.
Dana Sanchez, 2:13 pm
As the deadline approaches for renewing the African Growth and Opportunity Act, some Africans are asking South Africa not to give in to U.S. demands for duty-free access to U.S. poultry. Thanks to AGOA, South Africa has enjoyed duty-free access to the U.S. market for various products including wine, citrus, cars and textiles.
- Real Estate