“It is critical for workers and businesses in the U.S. and Africa that we extend this key provision before it is due to expire in September. Just last week, I visited a textile factory in Ghana that will likely have to close its doors and lay off nearly 500 employees if Third-Country Fabric expires - and that is just one example,” said Ambassador Kirk.
“I applaud Senate Finance for taking this significant step in passing the Third-Country Fabric provision of the African Growth and Opportunity Act. We look forward to continuing to work with Congress to renew Third-Country Fabric and implement technical changes to CAFTA-DR as soon as possible."
It follows a welcomed announcement by Congress on June 21 of an agreement to renew Third Country Fabric and make the technical changes needed to CAFTA-DR. U.S. orders for shipment of African exports after the slated expiration date of September 2012 are down 35 percent; African textile exports have already dropped by 27 percent in the last year.
U.S. Trade Representative
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