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About the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA)

The African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) is a trade mechanism that was passed by the US Government in 2000 to encourage US-Africa trade.

AGOA currently provides the 40 AGOA-eligible countries with:

  • Most liberal access to US markets for any country or region without at free trade agreement
  • Reinforced Africa reform and development efforts
  • Access to US credit and technical expertise

Eligibility for AGOA was designed to reward and provide incentives for Sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries that are making progress in political and economic reforms.

Each SSA country’s performance is assessed using the following criteria:

  • Establishment of market based economies
  • Development of political pluralism and the rule of law
  • Elimination of barriers to US trade and investment
  • Protection of intellectual property rights
  • Efforts to combat corruption
  • Policies to reduce poverty and increase access to health care and education
  • Protection of human rights and worker rights
  • Elimination of certain child labor practices

By creating tangible incentives for African countries to implement economic and commercial reform policies, AGOA contributes to better market opportunities and stronger commercial partners in Africa for US companies.

AGOA should help forge stronger commercial ties between African countries and the United States, while it helps to integrate Africa into the global economy. US firms may find new opportunities in privatizations of African state-owned enterprises, or in partnership withAfrican companies in infrastructure projects. US firms can also benefit by forming joint ventures with African or other firms to take advantage of AGOA benefits.

 

  NEWS!   

2nd Annual AGOA CSO Network
Spring Conference  ♦ April 13- 15, 2016  ♦ Washington, DC 

You are invited to join us for our 2nd Annual Spring Conference on AGOA. The theme of this year's event is The Role of Civil Society in AGOA Trade Expansion and Inclusive Development. The event will kick off with an Advisory Board  and AGOA CSO Planing/Town Hall meetings on Wednesday, April 13, 2016 and includes: several  noteworthy sessions  for members of Civil Society on Thursday, April 14th and concludes with a panel discussion on Trade and Private Sector Expansion: A Vehicle for  Economic Growth and Improved Standard of Living in Africa on Friday, April 15th. 

You must be accredited by The World Bank to attend this and other CS Events, the deadline for registration is April 1, 2016

Download Updated Agenda for Spring Event 

 For additional information contact: agoacsonet@democracy-africa.org or go to: http://www.democracy-africa.org  

###

AGOA CSO
2016 Spring Newsletter

Download Spring Newsletter



South Africa: SA's Suspension from AGOA to Be Lifted

 

By Thulani Gqirana, News24

The cloud of uncertainty hanging over South Africa following its suspension from the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) will be lifted, Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies said on Thursday.

The minister said he had received an email from the US trade representative, informing him of the intentions to lift the suspension.

"Based on the actions taken, I will be sending recommendations today to the president to revoke the suspension of AGOA benefits for South Africa," the letter reads.

Davies said it could take up to a couple of weeks to get signed, but the goal was to secure it before March 15.

This follows the arrival of the first US frozen chicken in South Africa on Friday. The consignment, comprising about 16 tons of chicken pieces, arrived at the port of Durban and hit store shelves almost immediately.

The country has agreed to 65 000 tons of US poultry imports annually.

Davies said the lifting of the suspension was a result of the work done jointly in the negotiating process. (Read more)

MEDIA RELEASE

DATE: 07 JANUARY 2016

TO: ALL NEWS EDITORS AND JOURNALISTS

NEGOTIATIONS BETWEEN SOUTH AFRICA AND THE USA WITH REGARD TO TRADE RELATED TO EXPORTS OF POULTRY, BEEF AND PORK MEAT FROM THE USA TO SOUTH AFRICA

Negotiations between South Africa and the USA on key areas related to the importation of poultry, beef and pork from the USA to South Africa were concluded at the meeting of the 06th January 2016. Both negotiating sides concluded with positive sentiments.

With regard to pork, on the importation of shoulder cuts, South Africa has agreed to permit the unrestricted importation of the shoulder cuts after the USA agreed to apply mitigation measures including the removal of risk material before exportation to South Africa.

On beef, South Africa had already agreed to import beef from the USA, however, the USA requested to be permitted to import livestock from third countries for direct slaughter and the meat thereof to be exported to South Africa. The USA has given guarantees that livestock imported from third countries for further export of the products thereof to ensure compliance with the USA domestic requirements. South Africa has agreed to the assurances given by the USA.

In relation to poultry, two issues were under consideration, namely Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) and Salmonella. Firstly on HPAI, after robust discussions between the authorities, an agreed Avian Influenza protocol for safe trade of poultry and poultry products was concluded in November 2015. The protocol will ensure that appropriate scientific measures are taken by the USA to ensure that the risk of transmission of HPAI to South African poultry is managed.

Secondly on Salmonella, the USA requested South Africa to reconsider its application of the Procedure Manual on Microbial Monitoring of Imported Meat. According to the Manual, all imported poultry products are tested for microbiological contamination which includes Salmonella and other conditions at the port of entry before they are released into the market. South Africa imports from over 3000 establishments across the world, and the testing requirements apply to all these establishments.

After intense negotiations, and the review of the USA food laws, South Africa has agreed to, for the first three months, risk profile all consignments imported from USA export establishments. Thereafter, a revised statistically risk-based sampling plan will be implemented. South Africa will sample and test all consignments for compliance. The Department of Health will monitor these products after release from ports on entry.

Enquiries: Sidwell Medupe       Departmental Spokesperson
Tel: (012) 394 1650   Mobile: 079 492 1774  E-mail: MSMedupe@thedti.gov.za  Issued by: The Department of Trade and Industry

Follow us on Twitter: @the_dti

 Download Media Release

Froman hails deal with South Africa
By Victoria Guida

01/07/2016 03:17 PM EDT

U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman confirmed this afternoon that all technical issues in the meat dispute between the United States and South Africa have been resolved, but that didn't remove the threat of suspending the country's trade benefits under the African Growth and Opportunity Act just yet.

"While we celebrate the progress we have made in resolving the outstanding technical issues, the true test of our success will be based on the ability of South African consumers to buy American product in local stores," which will be "the final benchmark," Froman said in a statement.

Jim Sumner, president of the USA Poultry and Egg Export Council, and National Chicken Council President Mike Brown echoed Froman's remarks.

"Although success will ultimately be realized when U.S. chicken is imported into South Africa, today's announcement is a positive step to bringing increased economic benefits to U.S. chicken farmers and companies across the country," they said in a joint statement. "But the real winners are South African consumers, who will now be afforded even more options when it comes to wholesome protein sources."

Sens. Chris Coons and Johnny Isakson, co-chairs of the Senate Chicken Caucus, also applauded the announcement that South Africa has removed the longstanding trade barriers to U.S. poultry.

"South Africa is a critical market for the U.S. poultry industry, and will lead to tens of millions of dollars more in annual export sales," the senators said in a joint statement. "It is also a good deal for South Africa, as our poultry is healthy, affordable, and of the highest quality, and we are thrilled that it will finally reach the dinner tables of South Africans."

To view online:
https://www.politicopro.com/trade/whiteboard/2016/01/froman-hails-deal-with-south-africa-065719<

    2015 AGOA Forum

August 24-27, 2015

Andgondje Friendship Stadium
Libreville, Gabon

The Civil Society Organization (CSO) session of the 14th African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) Forum took place on August 24-25, 2015, at the Andgondje Friendship Stadium, Libreville, Gabon. The theme of this years event was AGOA at 15: Civil Society Organizations Working
to Chart a Course for Sustainable U.S.-Africa Trade and Investment Partnership.
The session brought together more than 150 delegates from
the United States and AGOA eligible countries to address the following issues:

  • AGOA Annual Country Review for Eligibility Compliance, Sec. 105. Monitoring and review of eligibility
  • Trade Facilitation, and Transportation Linkages: Vehicles for Enhancing Competitiveness
  • AGOA Extension and Enhancement Act of 2015: Opportunities & Challenges
  • Textiles and Apparel: Optimizing Third Country Fabric Provision
  • Mentoring and Leadership Development for Women and for Young Entrepreneur
  • Strengthening Micro Small Medium Enterprise Value Chain

 Download

Fact Sheet on AGOA

CSO Session: 2015 AGOA Fourm Program Book

CSO Session: Commuique (English)

CSO Session: Communique (French)

CSO Session: Doing Business under AGOA Workshops


PRESENTATIONS:

AGOA: Annual Country Review for Eligibility Compliance

Professor Abdellatif Mahamat Taha, Ph.D.

Eric R. Biel, Associate Deputy Undersecretary, Bureau of International Labor Affairs, U.S. Department of Labor

Trade Facilitation, and Transportation Linkages

Dichaba Molobe, Director of Policy Botswana Confederation of Commerce, Industry, and Manpower, (BOCCIM), Botswana

Fauster Rogombe,  Commissioner General for Regional Integration, Gabon

Textiles and Apparel

Parfait Alexis Ndjombouet Ratanga, Procurement Manager, MGV

Zo Randriamaro, Coordinator, RSCDA- Indian Ocean, Madagascar

Caroline Sack Kendem, Presidet AWEP, Cameroon Chapter

Strengthening Micro, Small, Medium Enterprise Value Chain

S'khulumi Ntsoaole, Former Minister of Trade and Industry, Lesotho

William Massawe, Executive Director, Centre for Sustainable Development Initiatives (CSDI), Tanzania

Doing Business under AGOA

Andre Brice Boumbendje, Director General of Pension Plan & Investment of Defense Foreces, Gabon -Trade Assistance and Technical Capacity Building

Cosmas Mamhunze, Trade & Investment Specialist, USAID Southern Africa Trade Hub, Botswana - Marketing and Competitiveness

Abou Fall, AGOA & Value Chain Coordinator, USAID West Africa Trade Hub - Financing and Payment Terms

Anthony Carroll, Pragma, USAID - Branding, Packaging, and Labeling

 Charles A. Harwood, Director, Norwest Regional Office, and Deon Woods Bell, Counsel, U.S. Federal Trade Commission - Consumer Protection and Competition

2015 AGOA Forum
Photos

 

Official International Airline Carrier
of the
CSO Session of the 2015 AGOA Forum

 Ethiopian Airlines - Route Map

 


Summer Newsletter

Download

Summer Newsletter

Spring Newsletter

Winter Newsletter

To Ignore the AGOA Eligibility Requirements is Playing with Fire

by Eustace Davie     30 April 2015

 Georgia Republican Senator Johnny Isakson is demanding that South Africa (SA) must meet with AGOA’s eligibility requirements under the US African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) to remain an eligible sub-Saharan African country. According to a report in Business Day (24 April) he wants a review of South Africa’s eligibility, the purpose of which is, “to have people held accountable for their trade policies and practices …   Read More

 

 

Spring Conference
on AGOA

AGOA Re-Authorization Beyond 2015:
Perspectives from Africa and the US

April 16-17, 2015
Washington, DC, USA

2015 -2106
AGOA CSO Secretariat Chairman's Advisory Board Members
(click here!)

Luncheon Agenda (click here!)

Panel Discussion: The Role of the Diaspora in the Implementation
of AGOA at the World Bank (click here!)

 

Ambassador Cynthia Akuetteh, U.S. Ambassador to Gabon
and
Ambassador Michael Moussa-Adamo
, Ambassador to the U.S. from the Republic of Gabon

Download Presentation from "Gabon: AGOA and Beyond" Direct Lline Webinar

 

 OP-ED by Fred Oladeinde

 

Re-Authorize the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA)

The African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) was signed into law in May 2000 as Title 1 of The Trade and Development Act. In the 15 years since enactment, AGOA has become one of the defining characteristics of the United States’ trade and commercial relationship with Africa.  If Congress does not act, it will expire September 30, 2015.

AGOA’s strict eligibility requirements, which oblige African countries to open their economies, create strong incentives to build free markets and pursue economic growth through trade, not aid.    And it works.  Forty African countries can export nearly 6,800 products into the U.S. marketplace under the Act’s unilateral trade preference agreement. African trade with the U.S. has expanded by four folds; over 300,000 formal sector jobs have been created, and $52 billion of investment in productive enterprises is directly attributable to the trade relationship that AGOA has created between eligible countries and the U.S.  Deepening commercial relationships also benefit U.S. exporters.  U.S. exports to Africa have grown by 300 percent during the same period.  Read full OP ED

 

Letter Writing Campaign to Re-Authorize AGOA
Members of the AGOA CSO Network were on Capitol Hill this week delivering letters  to  members of the Committee on Ways, and Means, and the Committee on Foreign Affairs on the House side, and the  Foreign Relations and Finance Committee on the Senate side. The letters were delivered to 127 members of Congress. Click here to view the letter.

Thanks again to all  of you that supported us in this effort by adding your voice to this important issue. To follow up with a committee member, click on the Committee, and follow the link to the committee members' website.

PRESS RELEASE

Mancham Joins Campaign Urging Senate to Re-Authorize
the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA)

It is announced from Glacis-sur-Mer that founding President James R. Mancham has agreed to join the AGOA (African Growth and Opportunity Act), a civil society organization Network Letter Campaign for the timely reauthorization of AGOA with the US government.

It is to be noted that AGOA has been in operation since 2000 with a view to improve US-Africa trade and economic cooperation and that the Act is about to expire shortly.

The letter to which Sir James has agreed to be a co-signatory will be sent to the Chairs and ranking members of the Ways and Means committee of the US Senate Finance and Foreign Relations committee and is self-explanatory and reads as follows:

"Chairman Ryan and Ranking Member Sander Levin,

We, the members of the AGOA Civil Society Network, are writing to urge you to support a seamless and expeditious renewal of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), slated to expire on September 30, 2015. Passed by Congress and signed into law by President Clinton in 2000, with successive amendments by President George W. Bush in 2002 and 2004, AGOA now provides duty-free access to 40 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa for 6,800 products. This first-ever trade measure has historically benefited from bipartisan support in addition to strengthening U.S. relations with African nations and fostering vital economic growth both here and on the continent. We specifically request the following actions:

Read full release!

 

Communique
AGOA CSO Session of the 13th AGOA Forum (click here!)

 

AGOA  CSO Session
Program Book

 

Position Paper on Enhancing EAC-U.S.Trade and Investment Relationship under a
                     New Post-2015 AGOA Program (click here!)

      

AFL-CIO • SOLIDARITY CENTER  Paper
      Building a Strategy for Workers’ Rights and Inclusive Growth—
   A New Vision for the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA)
July 2014

                    

Civil Society Session of the 13th AGOA Forum

August 1 - 2 , 2014

 

FHI 360 Conference Center
1825 Connecticut Avenue, NW, 8th Floor
Washington, DC

 

The theme of the 2014  CSO Session of the US-Africa Trade and Economic Cooperation is:
AGOA: "Re-Authorization beyond 2015"

 

Please note: that this last opportunity  to discuss, and come up with written recommendations for presentation to the Ministerial Session 05 August 2014, before the pending expiration of AGOA in 2015. During the August 1-2, 2014  CSO Session, we will dis cuss the following:

  • The  futue of US-Africa trade and investment under AGOA;
  • The extension of AGOA beyond 2015; and
  • The role of civil society organizations on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean regading legislative policy reform in supporting regional integration in Africa and trade expansion between the US and Africa

AGENDA

Opening Ceremony

  Friday, August 1, 2014

  7:30 am - 8:00 am     Continental Breakfast and Networking

  8:00 am – 9:15 am       Opening Ceremony Speakers:

                 Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield Assistant Secretary, Bureau for African Affairs, U.S. Department of State

                 Florie Liser,  Assistant U. S. Trade Representative for Africa, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative

                 H.E.  Dr. Tebelelo Mazile Seretse, Ambassador of Botswana to the U.S.

                 Shari Berenbach, President and CEO, U.S. African Development Foundation (ADF)

                 Patrick Fine, Chief Executive Officer, FHI 360


      Panels

                  Textiles and Apparel   
               Regional Integration and  Trade Facilitation 

                 SME-- Capacity Building
                 Infrastructure and Transportation Linkages    
                 Eligibility Criteria and Reforms
                 

            Luncheon Speakers

             12:30 pm -1:45 pm   Luncheon

             Keynote Speakers:  

                      Hon. Dr. Arvin Boolell  Minister of Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and International Trade, Mauritius

                      Rev. David Beckman, President, Bread for the World

                      Eric R. Biel, Associate Deputy Undersecretary, Bureau of International Labor Affairs, U.S. Department of Labor

             

              Saturday, August 2, 2014

               8:00 am - 9:00 am          Continental Breakfast and Networking

               9:00 am – 10:15 am       Civil Society Organization Roundtable on AGOA

              10:30 am – 11:30 am       Rapporteurs Provide Update from Day One of  the CSO Session

              11:30 am – 12:30 pm       Recommendations/Communiqué and Press Conference

             

            CSO Dinner

               7:00 - 10:00 pm      Saturday,  August 2, 2014  - The Washington Plaza Hotel

                Keynote Remarks:   
                        Tom Malinowski, Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, U.S. Department, of State

             

            Press Accreditation Form

             

             

            SPONSORS:

             

             

            SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES (click here!)

            ADVERTISING RATES and SPECS

             

             

            2013 AGOA Forum

            on

            US-Africa Trade and Economic Cooperation Forum

             “Sustainable Transformation through Trade and Technology"

             

            August 10 - 13, 2013  ♦  African Union Center ♦  Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

             

            Communiqué

            AGOA Civil Society Forum

            Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

            Presented to 12th AGOA Ministerial Session

            on

            12th August 2013

            African Union Commission Conference Center

            Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

             

            Agenda

            Register

               Registration ends July 31, 2013!!!

            Accreditation Information

             

             

             

            Ambassador Michael Froman

            Michael Froman was sworn in as the 11th United States Trade Representative (USTR) on June 21, 2013. As USTR, he is President Obama’s principal advisor, negotiator and spokesperson on international trade and investment issues (Read more).

             

            U.S. Congress Approves Extension of AGOA Third Country Fabric Provision

            August 2, 2012, Washington, DC - The United States Congress voted, today, to renew the third country fabric provision (TCF) of the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) beyond September 30, 2012 to September 30, 2015. The legislation will now head to President Barack Obama’s desk, where he is expected to promptly sign it into law.

            This action is expected to impede the sharp decline in factory orders for exports of African apparel under AGOA, as well as, the loss of thousands of jobs in the United States and AGOA eligible countries. (click here to read more)

             

             

             

             

            2012 AGOA Forum

            on

            U.S.-sub-Saharan African Trade and Economic Investment

            “Enhancing Africa’s Infrastructure for Trade”

            June 14-15, 2012

            Agenda for Ministerial Session (click here)

             

            Ambassador Johnnie Carson, Assistant Secretary, Bureau

            of African Affairs, U.S. Dept. of State

             greets
            Fred Oladeinde, Chair, AGOA Civil Society Working Group, and
             President (FDA)

             

            during  a
             Reception at the Department of State
             on  the occasion of the  2012 AGO Forum

             

            11th Civil Society Organization Session

            of the

            2012 AGOA Forum

            June 12 - 15, 2012

            Washington, DC

             

            CSO Communique (click here!)

             

            Speeches and Presentations from the CSO Session of the 2012 AGOA Forum 
             
            Tuesday, June 12, 2012
            Washington Plaza Hotel
             
            Fred Oladeinde, Chair, AGOA CSO Working Group, and President, The Foundation for Democracy in Africa (FDA) 

             

            Florie Liser, Assistant U.S.Trade Representative for Africa, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative

             

            Michael Curtis, Acting Deputy Assistant Administrator for Africa USAID

            Tomicah Tillemann,  Senior Advisor to the Secretary for Civil Society and   Emerging Democracies, U.S. Dept of State 

              Dennis Matanda, The Africa Maven Group

            Gregory R. Gajewski, Vice President, Economic Development, The Louis Berger Group, Inc.

             

             

            Wednesday, June 13, 2012 
            The Woodrow Wilson Center

             

            Johnnie Carson, Assistant Secretary, Bureau of African Affairs, U.S. Dept. of State

              David Beckman, President, Bread for the World

             Rahama Wright, Chief Executive Officer, SheaYeleen International, Inc.

             Thomas Debass, Director for Global Partnerships, U. S. Department of State

             
             Maryamu Aminu, Assistant Director, US Government Relations, ONE
             

            Elizabeth A. Vazquez, President and CEO, WEConnect International Washington, DC, USA 

             

            Robin Sanders, Founder, FEEEDS Advocacy Initiative at Robert Morris University

             

            Nigest Haile, Founder and Executive Director, The Center for African Women Economic Empowerment (CAWEE)

             

             Eniola Mafe, Program Manager, Vital Voices Partnership

             

             

            AGO Civil Society Planning Committee Meetings

            March 16, 2012 Meeting Notes

            February 17, 2012 Meeting Notes

             

            AGOA Civil Society Working Group

            Working Document

            for

            2012 AGOA CSO Session

             

             

            African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) Forum:

            "A Decade of Progress in Bridging the US -African Trade Gap"

            July 29 -30, 2011

            Washington, DC

             

             

             

             

             

            The Secretariat for the AGOA Civil Society Network, (AGOA CSO Network) actively participated in AGO committee planning meetings in Washington, DC with key US  and Zambian government officials, and  civil society and  private sector leaders to discuss arrangements for the civil society,  private sector  and ministerial  elements of the 2011 Forum. Additionally,  the Secretariat was also been engaged in planning meetings with members of the Zambian civil society via conference calls and direct video conferences.

            The civil society and private sector sessions of the AGOA Forum took place June 8, 2011, the ministerial session took place June 9-10, 2011, and the African  Women's Entrepreneurship Program, (AWEP) introduced last year also took place on June 8, 2011. 

             

            10th Annual AGOA Forum

             

             

            Mulungushi International Conference Centre 

            Lusaka, Zambia

             

            Civil Society Session

            June 8, 2011  

             

            Click here to read the Civil Society Communique 

             The AGOA Civil Society Communiqué  was presented to the 2011 AGO Ministerial Forum by Fred Oladeinde, President of The Foundation for Democracy in Africa, and Chairman of the AGOA Civil Society Network; and Vladimir Chilinya, Coordinator, Center for Global Dialogue

             

            Private Sector Session
            June  8, 2011    

            Click here to read the Private Sector Communique 

             

            Ministerial Session
            June  9 -10 2011    

            Click here to read the Ministerial Communique

             

            Speeches from the 2011 AGOA Forum in Lusaka, Zambia

            Ambassador Ron Kirk, US Trade Representative 

            H.E. Rupiah Bwezani Banda, President of the Republic of Zambia

            Daniel W. Yohannes, CEO, Millenium Challenge Corporation

            Hillary Rodham Clinton, Secretary of State, USA

             

             

            Take a Survey on AGOA and its Impact on African Agriculture

             

            Speeches from the 8th AGOA Forum in Nairobi, Kenya

            His Excellency Honorable Mwai Kibaki, President, Republic of Kenya

            US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

            Rt. Honorable Raila Odinga, Prime Minister, Republic of Kenya

             

             

             2011 CIVIL SOCIETY PROCEEDINGS (click here!)

            2011 SUCCESS STORIES COMPENDIUM

             

            2010 CIVIL SOCIETY PROCEEDINGS (click here!)

            2010 SUCCESS STORIES COMPENDIUM

             

            Africa's Trade Profile

            Guide to US GovernmentTrade and Resources (1)

             Guide to US Government Trade and Investment Resources (2)

            AGOA Panel Management Guidelines

            Rapporteur Guidelines for State

             

            Zambia  served as  the host for the 10thAnnual AGO Forum. The forum took place in Lusaka,  June 8 - 10, 2011. The theme of this year's forum was "Enhanced Trade through  Increased Competiveness, Value Addition, and Deeper Regional Integration,"  and the event brought together civil society, and public and private sector leaders to examine ways to enhance AGOA's effectiveness.

            © 2010 The Foundation for Democracy in Africa. All Rights Reserved.