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Tuesday, 12 February, 2002, 17:28 GMT
Tanzania wins US export rights
Tanzania fabric
Mozambique needs more exports to boost its economy
Tanzania and Mozambique have secured the right to export clothes duty-free to the US under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) scheme.


The real challenge is for our traders to produce the high quality needed for the US market

Juma Ngasongwa
Trade and Industry Minister

Tanzania was given approval on Monday and Mozambique's will be published shortly, an Office of Textiles and Apparel spokesperson told BBC News Online.

Both countries are among the poorest in the world.

Tanzania's approval comes 18 months after it became eligible and began to implement AGOA's strict conditions, which includes a system to verify the goods exported were actually produced in Tanzania.

"We (government) are determined to ensure that the efforts to uphold these set conditions is sustained but the real challenge is for our traders to produce the high quality needed for the US market," Tanzania's Trade and Industry Minister Juma Ngasongwa told a news conference.

Under AGOA, countries can export unlimited amounts of apparel made from US textiles to the US without duties or quotas.

Existing quotas on exporting locally produced fabrics to the US will also be enlarged.

The US law also means that low-income countries like Tanzania and Mozambique can export some textile products made from cloth which they themselves have imported from countries other than the US.

Export conditions

About 35 countries in sub-Saharan Africa are eligible for AGOA but only 13 have so far been given approval to export to the US.

AGOA approved
Botswana
Ethiopia
Kenya
Lesotho
Madagascar
Malawi
Mauritius
Namibia
South Africa
Swaziland
Tanzania
Uganda
Zambia
AGOA requires countries to show their commitment to the rule of law and democracy, lift barriers to US trade and investment, protect intellectual property, fight corruption and reduce poverty.

A week after South Africa qualified, a Malaysia company announced it was investing $120m in Eastern Cape to build a clothing factory employing 13,000 workers.

Kenya, which qualified in January 2001 estimates 50,000 jobs were created last year in the textile sector due to AGOA.

Tanzania is a major African cotton producer and already exports to the European Union under the Cotonou agreement which gives it preferential treatment.

See also:

07 Feb 02 | Africa
Tanzania fights US gem boycott
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