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US-Africa trade gets a boost with renewal of AGOA

Published on June 30, 2015

The U.S. Congress has renewed a 15-year-old law that allows made-in-Africa goods to sail into the U.S. duty-free.

That makes Africa the latest continent wrapped up in a spree of trade legislation clearing through Congress.

The African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), which had been due to expire at the end of September, gives sub-Saharan African nations duty-free access to U.S. markets for certain goods such as textiles. It was packaged with another bill to extend a program of assistance to American workers who are shown to be hurt by overseas competition.

Congress cleared the legislation a day after it gave President Barack Obama “fast-track” trade authority to put trade deals, such as the impending Trans-Pacific Partnership, before Congress for an up-or-down vote.

While the fight over the workers-aid program, Trade Adjustment Assistance, stole the spotlight, the measure is also designed to help another set of factory workers hard-hit by Asia’s rise: Africans. Read more. Source| Wallstreet Journal