Reviving AGOA

September 29, 2010

The African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) of 2000 marked a majorchange in U.S. trade policy for poor countries by extending duty-free treatment to almost all imports from eligible countries, with the goal of expanding trade and encouraging growth-oriented reforms. African exports to the United States did increase markedly, but they were concentrated in a fewproducts from a handful of countries. Moreover, AGOA’s success in boostingclothing exports was not sustained as global competition increasedlater in the decade. To revive the program and expand its benefits, theObama administration and Congress should work together on two mainpriorities:

  1. Remove or significantly ease remaining restrictions on agricultural products.

  2. Collaborate more effectively with African partners to improve the business climate and competitiveness.


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