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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
December 22, 2004
Statement on the African Growth and and Opportunity Act
A central component of this Administration's broad commitment to trade liberalization has been to advance hope, opportunity, and prosperity in both developed and developing countries by reducing barriers to trade and investment. In this regard, the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) is a key pillar of the Administration's policy to spur economic development, alleviate poverty, and encourage trade in sub-Saharan Africa.
On December 21, President Bush determined that the following 36 countries continue to be eligible for economic and trade benefits under AGOA: Angola; Benin; Botswana; Cameroon; Cape Verde; Chad; Republic of the Congo; Democratic Republic of the Congo; Djibouti; Ethiopia; Gabon; The Gambia; Ghana; Guinea; Guinea-Bissau; Kenya; Lesotho; Madagascar; Malawi; Mali; Mauritania; Mauritius; Mozambique; Namibia; Niger; Nigeria; Rwanda; So Tome and Principe; Senegal; Seychelles; Sierra Leone; South Africa; Swaziland; Tanzania; Uganda; and Zambia. Burkina Faso was designated as eligible for economic and trade benefits under AGOA on December 10, 2004. The President has removed Cote d'Ivoire from the list of eligible countries.
As required by legislation, this annual determination allows for the provision of certain benefits to those countries that are making continued progress toward a market-based economy, the rule of law, free trade, economic policies that will reduce poverty, and protection of workers' rights. By providing these countries greater access to American markets, AGOA can continue to spur development by fostering new trade and economic opportunities and promoting shared values and shared responsibilities.
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