Trade and Investment Under AGOA to be Focus of Four ITC Investigations
The International Trade Commission announced Nov. 13 the launch of four investigations to examine the past performance and effects of the African Growth and Opportunity Act as well as the implications of potential modifications. These investigations were requested by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to aid in the process of considering the extension and possible revision of AGOA, which is due to expire Sept. 30, 2015. All four reports are expected to be submitted by the end of April 2014.
The only investigation that will yield a public report will address AGOA trade performance, utilization and competitiveness factors; AGOA’s effect on the business and investment climate in sub-Saharan Africa; and the relationship between current or potential sub-Saharan African reciprocal trade agreements and the objectives of AGOA. The other three reports will assess the economic effects on U.S. industries and consumers of providing duty-free treatment for AGOA imports, identify possible changes to the AGOA rules of origin with the potential to increase exports from AGOA-eligible countries, and evaluate the impact of the European Union-South Africa free trade agreement on U.S. exports to South Africa.
The ITC will hold one public hearing in connection with these investigations on Jan. 14, 2014. Requests to appear at this hearing are due no later than Dec. 13. Written submissions concerning any of these investigations are due no later than Jan. 21.