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Kenya finds a benefactor for renewal under AGOA
03
Nov '09
The African country of Kenya has found a benefactor in an influential lobby in the US, which is influencing the administration to reconsider Kenya in the list of eligible beneficiaries under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), when the act comes up for review next year.

The United States Association of Importers of Textiles and Apparel (USA-ITA) is strongly supporting Kenya, along with three other African countries, namely, Lesotho, Madagascar and Swaziland, for retaining these countries under the AGOA.

The US Trade Representative's office had invited opinions for and against retaining different countries under the AGOA status when it comes up of review in 2010 and is now preparing a report to be presented before the Obama administration.

“The Act authorises the President to designate countries as eligible to receive the benefits of AGOA, if they are determined to have established, or are making continual progress toward establishing the following: market-based economies; the rule of law and political pluralism and elimination of barriers to US trade and investment.

Qualification for eligibility is also hinged on protection of intellectual property, fight against graft, poverty reduction, improved health care and educational opportunities, protection of human rights and worker rights and elimination of certain child labour practices.

Kenya and a few other countries are under fire from the US administration for not adhering to a few of the principles laid out in the charter of the AGOA. Direct employment in the textile and apparel sector, which is heavily dependent on AGOA, stands at 25,776 in Kenya alone.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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