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Expanding Exports to Africa is Focus of ITA Inquiry

Tuesday, April 16, 2013
By Shawn McCausland
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

The International Trade Administration is soliciting through May 3 comments on key stakeholder priorities to be considered in the development and implementation of the Doing Business in Africa initiative, which seeks to increase U.S. exports to and commercial ties with Africa.

The DBIA campaign will include (1) targeted partnerships to promote trade with sub-Saharan Africa (e.g., the planned launch later this year of an Africa Global Business Summit series), (2) expanded trade promotion programs tailored toward Africa (e.g., enhanced International Buyer Program events), (3) enhanced Africa-focused export counseling to U.S. businesses, and (4) a dedicated online Africa Business Portal that will direct U.S. businesses to applicable federal resources. The ITA is inviting comments on the following topics to aid in further structuring this campaign.

- how the federal government can (a) help U.S. businesses identify and seize upon trade and investment opportunities in sub-Saharan Africa and (b) partner with nonprofit organizations, industry associations, local and state governments, and other organizations to achieve this goal, both in the short term and over the next five years

- how the federal government can encourage small and medium-sized businesses and African diaspora-owned businesses to trade with and invest in sub-Saharan Africa

- characterizations of the experience of doing business in Africa, including the receipt of any federal government assistance

- the country and sector opportunities the federal government should highlight within the African market

- what information the federal government could provide about trade and commercial opportunities in Africa that would be the most helpful and how to make that information available

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