Nigeria Obtains AGOA Certification for Handloomed Textiles
Committee for Implementation of Textile Agreements (CITA) for the U.S. government has approved Nigeria's application for Category 9 certification' under the AGOA preferential trade arrangement.
The approval took effect from August 1, according to Mrs Gladys Sasore, Special Adviser to the president on Export Programmes, who announced this at a meeting with Nigeria Textile Manufacturers Association in Lagos at the weekend.
Sasore, who is also Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) said with the certification, Nigeria was now qualified to export "hand loomed, handmade, folklore articles or ethnic printed fabrics" to the U.S.
She said the approval, as contained in the U.S. Federal Register of July 27, showed that "Nigeria is the 13th AGOA-eligible country to be granted the Category 9 Certification."
Sasore added that the country was the first to be granted the "machine-made ethnic printed fabric provision."
This means that made in Nigeria wax/African prints or Ankara, Aso oke, tie and dye, Akwete among others, could now be exported to the U.S. under the AGOA duty and quota free system.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the U.S. Trade Representative in Africa, Ms Flori Lisa, had given indication of this approval during the 4th AGOA Forum held in Dakar, Senegal, about three weeks ago.
The NEPC boss noted that the certification has now positioned Nigeria to capture a large share of the limited U.S. market for this product.
Certification - 3 She therefore urged members of the association to map out plans for immediate utilisation of the approval. Meanwhile, the NEPC has organised one-day AGOA awareness seminars/workshops to hold between Aug. 16 and Aug. 19, 2005, in Lagos, Kano and Aba respectively, NAN reports.
Topics to be discussed will include "Success Stories of Exports, Export Policy, Prerequisitesto be a Successful Exporter, Nuts and Bolts of Exporting under AGOA, Finding U.S. Buyers as well as Market Research.
There will also be presentations by the non-oil exporters from the textile and apparel, agro-allied and leather products sectors during the workshops.
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