TRALAC - Trade Law Centre

Obama victory renews hopes of SACU-US talks

Thursday, 06 November 2008

Source: Business Report (South Africa)

The election of Barack Obama as US president-designate has renewed hopes that free trade talks between the US and the Southern African Customs Union (Sacu) will be restarted.

However, Trudi Hartzenberg, the director of the Trade Law Centre for Southern Africa, said the economic climate was not favourable to an outcome soon on the Doha round.

Institute for Global Dialogue researcher Brendan Vickers said Obama had taken a conservative line on protecting US workers and a huge shift on Doha was unlikely, but Obama was likely to strengthen the African Growth and OpportunityAct (Agoa).

Trade and Industrial Policy Strategies senior trade economist Mmatlou Kalaba said Obama could extend Agoa beyond 2015, but he was unlikely to cut domestic farm subsidies to foster progress on Doha.

 

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