Letter From The President -- Suspension of the Application of Duty-Free Treatment to all AGOA-Eligible Goods
Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)
In accordance with sections 506A(d)(4)(C) and 506A(c) of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), I am providing 60-day advance notification of my intent to suspend the application of duty-free treatment to all AGOA-eligible goods in the agricultural sector for the Republic of South Africa 60 days after the date of this notification.
I am taking this step because South Africa continues to impose several longstanding barriers to U.S. trade, including barriers affecting certain U.S. agricultural exports, and thus I have determined that South Africa is not making continual progress toward the elimination of barriers to United States trade and investment as required by section 104 of AGOA. I have determined that such suspension of benefits would be more effective in promoting compliance by South Africa with the eligibility requirements listed in section 104 of AGOA than the termination of South Africa's designation as a beneficiary sub-Saharan African country, as it would better promote continuing efforts between the United States and South Africa to resolve these outstanding issues. Although South Africa has to date failed to meet critical benchmarks required to address these issues, it continues to express an interest in resolving U.S. concerns.
I will continue to assess whether South Africa is making continual progress toward the elimination of barriers to United States trade and investment in accordance with AGOA eligibility requirements, as well as whether this suspension of benefits is effective in promoting compliance with those requirements.