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Mali obtains third-country-fabric eligibility under AGOA's apparel provisions

Mali obtains third-country-fabric eligibility under AGOA's apparel provisions

The US has designated West African country Mali as a lesser-developed beneficiary country under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). The decision was included in a presidential proclamation outlining a number of changes to the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) following regular eligibility reviews, product reviews, and beneficiary developing country assessments. As a result, 30 days after the proclamation is published in the Federal Register, Mali will become eligible for AGOA's third-country fabric provision, which...

05 November 2019
Trump ends trade benefits for Cameroon over ‘persistent human rights violations’

Trump ends trade benefits for Cameroon over ‘persistent human rights violations’

President Trump said he will soon ax Cameroon from a trade program that allows African countries to sell goods to the United States on a duty-free basis, citing “persistent human rights violations” in a letter to Congress on Thursday. The decision comes as U.S. officials accuse the Central African nation of extrajudicial killings and unlawful detentions amid conflicts that have displaced more than a half-million people over the past two years.  “Despite intensive engagement between the United States and the Government...

02 November 2019 | Danielle Paquette
Trump scraps trade benefits for Cameroon over rights abuses

Trump scraps trade benefits for Cameroon over rights abuses

U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday said he would end Cameroon’s preferential trade benefits from Jan. 1, citing what he called the African country’s “persistent gross violations of internationally recognized human rights.” In a letter to the U.S. Congress, Trump said Cameroon had failed to address U.S. concerns regarding extrajudicial killings, torture and other persistent human rights violations being committed by Cameroonian security forces. “I am taking this step because I have determined that the Government of Cameroon...

01 November 2019
AGOA eligibility of Cameroon - message to Congress by the White House

AGOA eligibility of Cameroon - message to Congress by the White House

TO THE CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES In accordance with section 506A(a)(3)(B) of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended (19 U.S.C. 2466a(a)(3)(B)), I am providing notice of my intent to terminate the designation of the Republic of Cameroon (Cameroon) as a beneficiary sub-Saharan African country under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). I am taking this step because I have determined that the Government of Cameroon currently engages in gross violations of internationally recognized human rights, contravening the eligibility...

31 October 2019 | The White House
SA business organisation asks president to delay enactment of two Bills to ensure continued US trade benefits

SA business organisation asks president to delay enactment of two Bills to ensure continued US trade benefits

Business organisation Sakeliga has requested President Cyril Ramaphosa to delay the enactment of two Bills of Parliament, which it says could potentially jeopardise 40% of South Africa’s exports to the US. The relevant Bills are the Copyright Amendment Bill (B13B-2017) and the Performer’s Protection Bill (B24B-2016). Sakeliga’s open letter on Monday follows an announcement made last week by the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) of a review of South Africa’s eligibility for tariff exemptions under the Generalized...

28 October 2019 | SIMONE LIEDTKE
R35 billion in South African exports to the USA are at stake in a 'review' just triggered by SA's copyright reform efforts

R35 billion in South African exports to the USA are at stake in a 'review' just triggered by SA's copyright reform efforts

South African exports to the United States worth some R35 billion last year will be at stake when the Office of the United States Trade Representative launches a review of SA's eligibility for duty-free imports under the US system known as the Generalized System of Preferences, or GSP. The US federal government announced plans for the review on Friday. The exports threatened include – but go beyond – exports to America under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). Agoa exports are predicated on participating...

27 October 2019
US announces a review of South Africa's place in its biggest preferential trade scheme (GSP)

US announces a review of South Africa's place in its biggest preferential trade scheme (GSP)

The United States plans to review South Africa's eligibility to participate in its Generalized System of Preferences (GSP), the largest and oldest American scheme to allow duty-free imports from less developed countries. The South African review is "based on IP [intellectual property] protection and enforcement concerns", the Office of the United States Trade Representative said in an announcement on Friday. [See announcement here]. Dates for hearings on South Africa's involvement have yet to be...

26 October 2019
SA agro-processing products on show in the US

SA agro-processing products on show in the US

As part of the Department of Trade and Industry’s (dti) efforts to create market access for South African value-added products in the North American market, 17 South African agricultural companies are currently on an Outward Selling Mission (OSM) to the country. Delegates exhibited at the New York City Wine and Food Festival, which was attended by thousands of local and international buyers, foodies, chefs and industry professionals. The mission is set to conclude tomorrow at the Fresh Food Summit in California, and according to...

16 October 2019
USAID Southern Africa to support upcoming Swakopmund international trade expo

USAID Southern Africa to support upcoming Swakopmund international trade expo

The USAID/Southern Africa will collaborate with the government and the Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI) for the upcoming 7th Swakopmund International Trade Expo (SWAITEX). Dr Takele Tassew, Agriculture and Trade Advisor for the USAID/Southern Africa Regional Economic Growth Office, confirmed in a statement that this partnership is possible because of a meeting they had with the Ministry of Industrialization, Trade and SME Development at the 18th Annual African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) Forum held in Abidjan, Cote...

03 October 2019 | Donald Matthys