In the port city of Takoradi, a Trade Hub workshop connected apparel and textile producers, agribusiness processors, fresh agriculture producers, and cocoa processing operators in Ghana’s Western Region with information to help them understand and benefit from the U.S. African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).
The Trade Hub’s Senior AGOA Specialist, Dr. Mohamed Abou iiana, explained to the 50 participants of the October 30 workshop that nearly all products exported to the U.S. from sub-Saharan African are AGOA-eligible.
“The only condition is that these products meet the AGOA rule of origin requirements and must be exported directly from the beneficiary country—like Ghana to the U.S.,” said Dr. Abou iiana.
He encouraged participants to identify their strengths, find market niches, research and follow applicable regulations, achieve timely deliveries, and become attuned to market trends to maximize AGOA benefits. He pointed to Kenya, Ethiopia, and Lesotho, which are generating more foreign exchange revenue under the act.
Dr. Abou iiana also walked participants through the process of checking AGOA eligibility:
- Visit http://www.foreign-trade.com/reference/hscode.cfm and browse the harmonized system (HS) categories to locate the preferred product.
- Copy the code and search for it on the USITC online website (https://hts.usitc.gov/).
- Look through the Rates of Duty column to determine the applicable tariff, namely: A (GSP Preference), which is duty free; D (AGOA eligible product); and A+ (Lesser Developed Beneficiary), which is also duty free.
Mr. George Fynn of the USAID/METSS Project discussed the origins of the national AGOA strategy to leverage AGOA before its expiration in 2025.