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AGOA Summit Set to Strengthen Trade and Economic Ties between the US and Sub-Saharan Africa

South Africa is set to host the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) Summit later this year, despite recent diplomatic tensions between the country and the United States (US). In June this year, US legislators called for the relocation of the summit due to controversy surrounding alleged arms shipments to Russia by South Africa. Cleared of any wrongdoing by an internal judicial panel, the US has reaffirmed its commitment to shared growth with South Africa. South African President Cyril Ramaphosa not only celebrated the country’s hosting of the summit but also called for the renewal of the agreement for another decade. The current format of AGOA is set to expire in 2025. Emphasizing the importance of South Africa-US relations, Ramaphosa declared: “The US remains a very important economic partner in trade and investment, with great potential to further expand economic ties,” in a press release. AGOA currently benefits eligible sub-Saharan countries by providing access to US markets for several thousand products, including duty-free access for some exports. South Africa continues to be the largest exporter in the agreement, generating approximately $2.7 billion in revenue for the country as of 2021, primarily from vehicles, jewelry, and metals.

FORBES AFRICA