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Kenya–US trade talks on hold, awaits Biden's administration

Kenya hopes to resume trade talks with the US after change of guard at the White House with President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration on Wednesday.  The country is optimistic of speedy resumption of negotiations, with hopes the Biden administration will warm up to Africa, and Kenya as an investment destination and trade partner. The negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) which commenced on July 8, last year,  stalled due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the recent US elections. Talks later resumed with the first and second...

21 January 2021 | Martin Mwita

After record season, United States opens new ports to South African citrus exports

The United States government has announced the opening up of several new ports for the import for citrus products from South Africa, further facilitating two-way trade with South Africa. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service published a final notice in the U.S. Federal Register on November 5th [see document alongside] approving the use of additional ports options for South African citrus growers.   Previously, the South African citrus industry was limited to the use of only four...

19 January 2021

'Uncertainty around Kenya-US Free trade deal'

A cloud of uncertainty has engulfed Kenya’s pursuit of a free trade agreement (FTA) with the United States due to the impending change of guard at the White House.  Even before he takes office, President-elect Joe Biden has sent strong indications of plans to annul many of President Donald Trump’s policies, cutting across trade, environment and geopolitics - something that has Kenya on edge over the ongoing negotiations for a bilateral FTA.  Anxiety in Nairobi has been exacerbated by the unexpected resignation of U.S....

18 January 2021 | NJIRAINI MUCHIRA

Reinstatement of the Democratic Republic of the Congo to AGOA

Yesterday evening, President Donald J. Trump issued a proclamation reinstating the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s (DRC) eligibility for trade preferences under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).  This decision affirms the DRC’s progress in meeting AGOA’s rigorous eligibility requirements as established by the U.S. Congress and President Tshisekedi’s efforts to reform and strengthen the DRC’s democratic institutions, protect human rights, and to combat corruption.  The reinstatement recognizes the DRC’s...

05 January 2021

Kenya exports to US climb to Sh67 billion

Kenyan exports to America under the Africa Growth Opportunities Act (AGOA) hit Sh67 billion last year, a marginal increase of 3.7 per cent from Sh64 billion recorded in the previous year. According to the latest report from the Office of the US Trade Representative, Kenya emerged the fourth exporter under Agoa, after Nigeria (Sh310 billion), South Africa (Sh200 billion) and Angola (Sh60 billion) in Africa. “Kenya is currently our 96th largest goods trading partner with Sh110 billion in total (two way) goods trade during 2019,” said the...

30 December 2020 | FRANKLINE SUNDAY

Nigeria’s duty-free export to US shrinks to $351m

Nigeria’s export to the United States under a duty-free policy declined in the first nine months of 2020, recording $351.73m from January to September. According to the latest African Growth and Opportunity Act policy trade statistics, exports to the US under the policy fell by 86.97 per cent from $2,699.13m in the first nine months of 2019 to $351.73m in the corresponding period in 2020. The AGOA, a United States’ trade policy, enacted in 2000, is a legislation that facilitates a duty-free trade between exporters from sub-Saharan...

27 December 2020 | Ife Ogunfuwa

The Democratic Republic of Congo once again to benefit from the US AGOA

After almost a decade of exclusion, the Democratic Republic of Congo will once again be able to benefit from the trade preferences offered by AGOA. This decision was made by outgoing US President Donald Trump, while the US is emerging as one of President Tshisekedi’s privileged allies. On May 19, 2020, Constance Hamilton, Deputy U.S. Trade Representative for Africa, had formally written to Congolese authorities to discuss the conditions for the DRC’s reinstatement under AGOA, the U.S. African Growth and Opportunity Act. At the time,...

25 December 2020 | Steven Addamah

Proclamation to take certain actions under the AGOA [DR Congo] and for other purposes

1. In Proclamation 8618 of December 21, 2010, the President determined that the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) was not making continual progress in meeting the requirements described in section 506A(a)(1) of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended (the “Trade Act”), as added by section 111(a) of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (the “AGOA”)(title I of Public Law 106–200, 114 Stat. 251, 257-58 (19 U.S.C. 2466a(a)(1))). Thus, pursuant to section 506A(a)(3) of the Trade Act (19 U.S.C. 2466a(a)(3)), the President terminated the...

22 December 2020

Chamber plans business parks to deepen US-Nigerian trade relations

The Nigerian America Chamber of Commerce says it is planning to establish parks in states for businesses to benefit from the duty-free Africa Growth Opportunities Act of the United States government. The President, NACC, Otunba Toyin Akomolafe, during a courtesy visit to The PUNCH head office in Ogun State on Tuesday said the parks would be a platform to create awareness of the eligible products and acceptable standards by the American government. Already, he said Osun and Imo state governments had shown interest in the parks. He...

16 December 2020 | Ife Ogunfuwa

Uganda to work on increasing exports in wake of Covid-19 challenges

In the wake of COVID-19 and its devastating effects, Uganda is producing solution-based products onto market. Unlike in the past, Ugandan products have been warmly received by local consumers because of their improved quality, says NRM National Treasurer Namayanja Rose Nsereko. According to her, Ugandan scientists are in final stages of testing COVID-19 vaccines with 90% probable curing capacity. “All these innovations coupled with ambitious plans to industrialise Uganda are great strides desirous of our celebrations.” However,...

13 December 2020 | PETER SSENTI

Ghana Apparel Training Centre launched to develop garment industry

In efforts to support Ghana’s garment manufacturing industry, the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, together with its partners – Ethical Apparel Africa (EAA), Gerber, Groz Beckert, Freudenberg and Accra Technical Training College (ATTC), have officially launched the Ghana Apparel Training & Service Centre, in Accra. The launch forms part of a public-private partnership between the German Federal Government and Ghana’s private sector. With funding from the German Federal government, this...

27 November 2020 | Nicholas Brown