AGOA - What it means for Namibian business
Namibia is a small and open economy with a total population of 2.4 million in 2017. In addition to the small population, the extreme unequal distribution of wealth and income limits the demand for domestically produced goods and services. In order to exploit economies of scale, companies need to explore export markets. Imports and exports combined accounted for 102.6% of GDP in 2017, which is below previous years’ averages.
Namibia exported a narrower range of products to the USA than to other markets. Over the ten-year period, Namibian exports to the USA fell into 1,447 HS8 tariff lines compared to 7,208 tariff lines for total exports. However, a higher share of Namibia’s exports to the USA fell into tariff lines that were eligible for AGOA preferences as compared to the country’s exports to other destinations. In contrast, however, these tariff lines accounted for a lower share of total exports to the USA than of exports to other countries. Despite preferential access to the US market, Namibia exports these products mainly to other markets.