Agoa.info - African Growth and Opportunity Act
TRALAC - Trade Law Centre
You are here: Home/News/Article/US Chamber of Commerce hosts South African president Ramaphosa to deepen bilateral trade, investment ties

US Chamber of Commerce hosts South African president Ramaphosa to deepen bilateral trade, investment ties

US Chamber of Commerce hosts South African president Ramaphosa to deepen bilateral trade, investment ties
Published date:
Monday, 18 September 2023

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is organizing a record number of meetings and events on the sidelines of the 78th session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) to help foster public-private collaboration and underscore the indispensable role of the private sector in realizing the UN’s global targets.

As part of this effort, the U.S. Chamber’s U.S.-Africa Business Center (USAfBC) today hosted the U.S.-South Africa Trade and Investment Executive Dialogue with the President of the Republic of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa.

President Ramaphosa said, “Over 600 U.S. businesses are operating in South Africa, the most industrialized and diversified economy in Africa. I’m glad that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce convened today’s productive discussions on the U.S.-South Africa economic relationship. I invite more U.S. companies to invest and build manufacturing and other productive facilities in South Africa and share in the opportunities in our economy and the fast-growing African market.

I wish the partnership between the U.S. Chamber and Business Unity South Africa well, as it adds to the private sector’s existing efforts to strengthen our countries’ economic bonds, and to expanding South Africa's role as an economic hub in Africa.” 

The dialogue, hosted in conjunction with Business Unity South Africa (BUSA), built on partnership efforts articulated in the organizations’ Memorandum of Understanding, included the launch of an annual U.S. Chamber-BUSA South Africa-U.S. Trade and Investment Forum. The discussions today explored how the new Trade and Investment Forum can have the most actionable impact on growing U.S.-South Africa commercial ties.  

USAfBC President Scott Eisner said, “At the 2019 South Africa investment conference, I pledged the U.S. Chamber would strive towards doubling U.S. commercial and foreign direct investment in South Africa by 2025—an ambitious target that the U.S. Chamber publicly recommitted itself to last year.

Today’s dialogue, themed around ‘An Agenda for Accelerating Economic Growth,’ is organized in that collaborative spirit, and we were honored to hear President Ramaphosa’s vision for the U.S.-South Africa commercial partnership, and of his support for the U.S. Chamber and BUSA’s intent to launch a yearly South Africa-U.S. Trade and Investment Forum. We look forward to further elevating our partnership in-person in South Africa this November, at the next annual United States-Sub-Saharan Africa Trade and Economic Cooperation Forum (AGOA Forum) meeting.” 

BUSA CEO Cas Covaadia said, “The opportunity is ripe for U.S. and international investors to be part of South Africa’s growth efforts in a partnership between business and government, to put the country onto a sustainable growth path and optimize its amazing potential—exactly the aim of today’s dialogue.

The MOU between Business Unity South Africa and the U.S. Chamber—and now our launch of the South Africa-U.S. Trade and Investment Forum—demonstrates how partnership is so key to prioritizing and promoting our countries’ shared growth and prosperity. As BUSA and the U.S. Chamber continue stimulating U.S.-South Africa trade and investment, BUSA stands ready as a trusted partner for investors entering the South African market.” 

Over the course of UNGA from September 18 – 22, the U.S. Chamber is leading over 24 high-level conversations with top government representatives, including heads of state and government, from countries including Brazil, Nigeria, South Africa, and Türkiye.

Read related news articles

US congress receives Bill to review South Africa relations

A bill has been submitted to the United States congress calling for a full review of the country’s bilateral relationship with South Africa following the International Court of Justice ruling that found it plausible that Israel has committed acts of genocide against Gaza. The bipartisan bill which was introduced by US Republican congressman John James and Democratic Party congressman Jared Moskowitz this week could threaten South...

09 February 2024

Fitch research unit expects better AGOA deal for South Africa

Fitch’s research arm, BMI, believes SA has done enough to get improved trade terms under the African Growth & Opportunity Act (Agoa), which it expects to be extended and modified before its expiry in September 2025. But it warns that the deal might be stillborn if Donald Trump is elected US president. The research think-tank said in a note it assigns a 65% probability that Agoa will not only be renewed but modified to the benefit of...

09 January 2024

South Africa: BLSA CEO calls for more companies to leverage AGOA opportunities

Many more South African companies could benefit from the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), which gives eligible countries access to US markets free of tariff barriers, business organisation BusinessLeadership South Africa (BLSA) CEO Busi Mavuso writes in her weekly newsletter. Apart from mainstream formal sector businesses, there are opportunities to enable more entrepreneurs, including women-led...

20 November 2023

US ambassador: AGOA is an opportunity to deepen ties between the US and South Africa

President Joe Biden last December at the US-Africa Leaders Summit affirmed that the US will elevate its relationship with Africa. The future is Africa. One example is its youthful population: the median age on the continent is 19. By 2050, one in four people in the world will be in Africa. The US wants them to be healthy and wealthy. What happens in Africa will affect the rest of the globe — and we want to work together to ensure it is...

09 November 2023

US Senator Chris Coons proposes AGOA extension by 16 years, immediate review of SA’s AGOA eligibility

Powerful US Democratic Party Senator Chris Coons is circulating a discussion draft of a Bill to renew the African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa) for 16 years that would also require an immediate “out-of-cycle” review of South Africa’s eligibility for Agoa. That could lead to South Africa being removed next year from the programme, which has provided considerable benefits to SA exporters to the US of cars, fruits and wine, in...

07 November 2023

AGOA benefits extend beyond trade [incl. VIDEO of Friday's opening session]

Economies in Sub-Saharan countries stand to benefit far more from the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) than notable trade statistics, says President Cyril Ramaphosa. “AGOA enhances the diversification of African economies, enabling them to export value-added products. By enabling African countries to have preferential access to the US market, this opportunity incentivises African countries to develop and export value-added goods...

06 November 2023

South Africa pins its hopes on an early 2024 US Congress renewal of AGOA

South Africa’s government is hoping that the process to renew the African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa) by the US Congress will be concluded by early 2024, ensuring that more than 20 African countries continue to have duty-free access to the world’s largest economy.   This is the first time that the South African government has given a timeline for when it hopes the US Congress might extend Agoa, which has been renewed twice...

05 November 2023

SA trade minister Patel expresses confidence at media briefing about South Africa’s continued inclusion in AGOA

Ahead of South Africa hosting the US-AfricaTrade and Economic Cooperation Forum – also called the AGOA Forum – from November 2 to 4, Trade, Industry and Competition Minister Ebrahim Patel on October 26 briefed the media on the state of readiness for the forum, expressing confidence that the South African government’s relations with the US were strong. Various South African stakeholders have been motivating for...

26 October 2023

Business Leadership SA calls for business to capitalise on South Africa’s hosting of AGOA Forum

It is notable that South Africa will still host the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) Private Sector Forum next month, given that several US lawmakers have called for it to be moved elsewhere, and have questioned the country’s preferential trade terms with the US under Agoa as such preferential access to the US markets is open only to African countries that do not threaten American security interests. This is...

24 October 2023

'South Africa expected to retain its AGOA status despite differences with US'

It is almost certain that South Africa’s Agoa status will be renewed despite it and the US often being on opposite sides over geopolitical crises in the past year. The eligibility of countries for the US’s African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa) has been under review during the past few months, and it is becoming clearer that South Africa is one of the countries that will continue being a part of the trade programme. A strong...

19 October 2023

South Africa: Entrepreneurial sisters venture into US market [WATCH]

It was a drive to explore international trade that saw entrepreneurial sisters, Michelle and Mo Mokone, grabbing an opportunity to venture into the United States of America market. The pair are the co-owners of Mo’s Crib, a company that produces a range of handmade home décor products.  Their product range includes handwoven baskets, planters, trays, wall art and home outdoor items. It was in 2021 that the pair decided to take...

09 October 2023

You are here: Home/News/Article/US Chamber of Commerce hosts South African president Ramaphosa to deepen bilateral trade, investment ties