ANNOUNCEMENT 28 Sep 2016
In 2016 the United States provided for expanded preferential treatment of textile and apparel imports from beneficiaries of the African Growth and Opportunities Act.
NUMBER OF INTERVENTIONS
On September 28, 2016 the Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements (CITA) published a notice in the Federal Register providing for an increase in the level of textile and apparel articles that may be imported on a preferential basis from designated beneficiary countries of the African Growth and Opportunities Act (AGOA). As first created in the Trade and Development Act of 2000, and amended by several subsequent trade laws, AGOA generally provides for duty- and quota-free treatment of U.S. imports from numerous sub-Saharan African countries. Preferential imports of textile and apparel products from AGOA beneficiary countries are subject to special rules, including quantitative restrictions. Those rules are more generous for certain beneficiaries that are designated as lesser-developed countries, namely Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Chad, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia. Other beneficiaries that are designated for preferential treatment of textile and apparel trade include Cote d'Ivoire, South Africa, Swaziland, and Togo.
This latest CITA decision provides that for Fiscal Year 2017 (i.e., the one-year period that begins on October 1, 2016 and extends through September 30, 2017), the aggregate quantity of imports eligible for preferential treatment under AGOA is 1,966,511,796 square meters equivalent. That represents a 1.6% increase over the level in the preceding year (i.e., 1,935,096,830 square meters equivalent). Of this amount, 983,255,898 square meters equivalent is available to apparel articles imported under the special rule for lesser-developed countries. That too represents a 1.6% increase over the level in the preceding year (i.e., 967,548,415 square meters equivalent). Apparel articles entered in excess of these quantities will be subject to otherwise applicable tariffs.