The East African Community (EAC) yesterday begun a three-day meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, aimed at developing a regional African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) work plan.
AGOA is a partnership between the United States of America and Sub Saharan Africa aimed at creating an environment that encourages Africans to access the US market.
A statement released by the EAC, Director for Trade, Dr. Flora Musonda, reads that the development of a regional approach for AGOA program will be based on the review of all the stages of production of eligible products and will identify sectors where regional cooperation can be envisaged.
She says the EAC is organising consultations with partner states and AGOA stakeholders with the main aim of coming up with strategies to develop and implement a regional approach which is expected to increase the export potential within AGOA framework.
She adds that the Nairobi meeting will consider among other things; the review of products to be exported to the US market and identify where regional cooperation can be initiated
“It will identify the activities to be undertaken and by who; identify the targets to be achieved and when; discuss new elements to be incorporated into national AGOA work plan; and finally discuss and make proposals on the monetary and evaluation mechanism,” she says.
During the last AGOA Forum held in Nairobi in 2009, African Ministers recognised the need to adopt a regional approach to create conditions of increased exports to the US market.
With this working relationship, EAC countries shall take advantage of AGOA to transform their economies since the act offers an opportunity to export over 6,400 products duty-free, quota-free to the largest consumer market in the world.