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Uganda yet to exploit AGOA benefits: US envoy Malac
Apr '18
Uganda is yet to take full advantage of the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) benefits, US ambassador to the nation Deborah Malac recently said. Blaming absence of an AGOA strategy as a key bottleneck, Malac said Uganda is yet to overcome that even under AGOA’s second phase renewed three years ago. Talks are under way to better the situation, she said.

Some experts, however, feel there is a need to close the trade imbalance between both the countries despite AGOA, according to a report in an Ugandan English-language daily.

AGOA allows over 6,000 products to be exported to the United States. Uganda is one of 38 African countries eligible for tariff-free and quota-free access to the US market.

A 2015 study by Kampala-based Economic Policy Research Centre (EPRC) blamed the lack of competitiveness and an unsupportive domestic environment for Uganda’s failure to take advantage of AGOA. Uganda’s production is characterised by use of basic technologies, little control over production conditions, high costs of electricity, high cost of finance and infrastructural deficiencies, the study noted.

Even after the government set up the Export-Led Growth Strategy Unit (ELGSU) to expedite export-related issues, a number of challenges continue to haunt the initiative, the study added. (DS)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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