TRALAC - Trade Law Centre

Ethiopia: AGOA exports show over 100% annual increase in 2008

Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Source: Jimma Times (Ethiopia)

Continuing a trend of accelerated growth, Ethiopian exports to the United States under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) in 2008 more than doubled from 2007.

From January to December 2008, Ethiopia’s AGOA exports reached USD $18 million, surpassing USD $8.9 million in AGOA exports during the 2007 calendar year. Total Ethiopian exports to the U.S. also rose 172 percent, to USD $152 million from USD $88 million the year before.

“This is a huge accomplishment. Ethiopia is one of the few African countries to show such a steady, marked increase in exports,” says Addis Alemayehu, Chief of Party of USAID’s VEGA Ethiopia AGOA+ Program. Ethiopia’s growth rate for AGOA-eligible exports in 2008 is much higher than the 30 percent average of other AGOA nations.

The textile and garments sector, long considered an under performer given its potential in Ethiopia and the competitive advantage offered under AGOA's zero tariff preference, achieved the highest total exports with an impressive increase of over 100 percent from $4.5 million in 2007 to $9.3 million in 2008. Other sectors that benefit from AGOA also recorded significant increases, including agriculture products (100 percent), minerals and metals (471 percent), and other manufactures (243 percent).

The VEGA Ethiopia AGOA+ Program, funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), is the only stand-alone trade promotion program in Africa working to increase exports to the U.S. under AGOA. USAID’s VEGA Ethiopia AGOA+ Program has been operating in Ethiopia for the last four years, providing targeted intervention to support Ethiopian exporters gain a foothold in the U.S. market.

USAID VEGA Ethiopia AGOA+ was initiated in January 2005 and has made tremendous progress in contributing to the growth of exports from Ethiopia to the U.S market. The project works in close partnership with the Government of Ethiopia, the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs through the Ethiopian Embassy in the Washington, DC, the Ethiopian and Addis Ababa Chambers of Commerce and Sectoral Associations, and other development partners including the World Bank Country Office in Ethiopia and the ECA Trade Hub in Nairobi, Kenya.

US Embassy Press Release

“ Latest AGOA Trade Data currently available on

Click here to view a sector profile of Ethiopia's bilateral trade with the United States, disaggregated by total exports and imports, AGOA exports and GSP exports.

Other regularly updated trade statistics on include: (click each link to view)

  • AGOA-Beneficiary Countries’ AGOA and GSP Trade Aggregates

  • AGOA Trade by Industry Sector

  • Apparel Trade under AGOA’s Wearing Apparel Provisions

  • Latest Apparel Quotas under AGOA

  • Bilateral Trade Data for all AGOA-eligible countries individually.