TRALAC - Trade Law Centre

Tanzania's AGOA Exports Reach $1.3m

Monday, 15 September 2003

Source: The East African (Nairobi)

Tanzanian exports to the US under the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa) doubled in 2002.

The country exported $1.3 million worth goods, more than twice the $0.5 million it exported the previous year.

The US ambassador to Tanzania, Robert Royall, is optimistic that this year too, the volume of exports will double.

However, Mr Royall said: "More has to be done, not by the government, but by the new breed of Tanzania businesspeople who are not afraid of competition, who believe in themselves and who can produce goods that can compete on the global market."

Mr Royall was speaking at a daylong workshop in Dar es Salaam last week aimed at encouraging exporters under Agoa held.

Under Agoa, Tanzania can export 6,000 different types of products to the US. The Arusha-based apparel manufacturing company, Sunflag, the Tanzania Tea Blenders are among the firms that have benefited under the Agoa arrangement.

The US government, in conjunction with the Tanzania embassy in Washington, is working on a programme to expand opportunities for agro-based businesses to increase exports to the American market. "Our commercial section also wants to link Tanzanian agricultural interests to US investors who can provide the know-how and the capital needed to develop your rich potential," said Mr Royall.

The workshop was organised by the US embassy in collaboration with the Tanzania Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture (TCCIA) and the Sokoine University of Agriculture.

The 250 participants were drawn from the Dar es Salaam, Morogoro and Arusha regions.

The TCCIA deputy president (agriculture), Julius Matiko, said that globalisation was relevant to the country today because it involved not only the welfare of Tanzanians, but also their survival as a nation.

Agoa offers tangible incentives for African countries to increase their exports, open up their economies and build free markets.

Tanzania's duty-free exports to the US were valued at $899,000 in 2001, almost all of which were agricultural and forestry products. These exports represented three per cent of Tanzania's total exports to the US.