S.Africa signs poultry deal to stay in US trade pact
South Africa has signed a veterinary trade protocol opening the way for American poultry imports, a key step to prevent ejection from a preferential trade pact, the government said Tuesday.
Citing continued barriers to US exports in South Africa, President Barack Obama had earlier this month given Pretoria 60 days to resolve the impasse or face expulsion from the duty-free treatment of its farming exports under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).
“This agreement signals another significant milestone in the process of securing AGOA for South African exporters into the US market,” the trade and agriculture departments said in a joint statement.
AGOA was created in 2000 to help boost exports to the US from African countries deemed to be democratic and applying good governance.
The loss of access to AGOA for South Africa would compound problems faced by its struggling economy.
In 2013, the country shipped $253 million worth of agricultural products to the United States.