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What is the African Growth & Opportunity Act?

The African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) of 2000 was signed into law with the intent to increasing trade between the United States and Sub-Saharan Africa. The  SSA countries that are eligible  for AGOA status are Angola; Benin; Botswana; Burkina Faso; Burundi; Cameroon; Cape Verde; Chad; Comoros; Republic of Congo; Democratic Republic of Congo; Djibouti; Ethiopia; Gabon; The Gambia; Ghana; Guinea-Bissau; Kenya; Lesotho; Liberia; Malawi; Mali; Mauritania; Mauritius; Mozambique; Namibia; Nigeria; Rwanda; Sao Tome and Principe; Senegal; Seychelles; Sierra Leone; South Africa; Swaziland; Tanzania; Togo; Uganda; Zambia. These countries are chosen at the discretion of the US President. AGOA is a trade agreement that promotes political and economic reform and encourages SSA countries to export to U.S and American companies to invest in SSA. 
 AGOA is a trade agreement that promotes political and economic reform. It encourages SSA countries to export to U.S and American companies to invest in SSA. The reasons that AGOA has not been as successful as it could be when it was envisioned. 40% of Africans live in landlocked countries without access to sea ports compared to 4% of the world’s population that has access and can take advantage of sea transportation. The removal of quotas in the apparel market meant that south East Asian countries could be a source for US companies and this competition led to decline in exports in 2009 from $1.7 billion in 2004 to $0.9billion. 
American policymakers can create tax incentives to encourage companies to source non petroleum products from SSA. The other step is to encourage SSA countries to develop regional policy that lowers cost. SSA must also work to reduce corruption, make credit more accessible and protect intellectual property and improve infrastructure in order to attract investment.  

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