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How can I show my products are AGOA eligible?

Published on July 13, 2015

Hello there AGOA Team,

I am Haritiana Langlois a national of Madagascar and I live in the USA. I own a small business. I import handicraft from Madagascar and other SSA countries. I would like my shipments to benefit from the AGOA when it comes to import tariffs. The US Customs Border Protection has sent me a list of documents to be provided in order to take advantage of AGOA.

One of the items is "a statement as to whether the goods are the product of a sub-Saharan African country and eligible for preferential treatment under AGOA". My question is: Who is supposed to issue that statement? Will it be a local authority in Madagascar? If yes, would you know which authority will have to issue this statement?

Also, I was wondering if you have any practical tool available to help small business owners located in AGOA eligible country comply with the AGOA requirements. (i.e. tools that help document direct costs of processing, manufacturing, etc. ), would you please share those tools.

Thank you so much for your help.

Answer:

Thank you for your question. 

Please see the attached document which should give you the information you are looking for. 

You mention handicrafts from Madagascar, which are AGOA eligible given Madagascar's recent designation as an AGOA beneficiary country.  For the other countries, make sure they are AGOA eligible, but handicrafts by and large are duty-free under AGOA.  Duty rates can be checked by HS code at: www.usitc.gov.  Regarding your specific question, the exporter in Africa is the one which fills out the forms and declares the product(s) duty-free under AGOA.  For apparel, a visa stamp which confirms country of origin is also required, this is issued by the government - but I don't think you mentioned apparel. The visa is not required for other products.  I hope this helps and best of luck.