The White House
President George W. Bush
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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
January 4, 2003

Statement on AGOA

On December 31, 2002, President Bush approved the designation of the following 38 Sub-Saharan African countries as eligible for tariff preferences under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA): Benin; Botswana; Cameroon; Cape Verde; Central African Republic; Chad; Republic of the Congo; Cote d'Ivoire; Democratic Republic of the Congo; Djibouti; Eritrea; 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.

As required by the legislation, this annual determination signifies which countries 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 spur development of an economic relationship between the United States and Africa that is based on shared values and shared responsibilities in a world of free trade, free peoples, and free ideas. This year, the President has added The Gambia and The Democratic Republic of the Congo to the list of eligible countries. The Democratic Republic of Congo's AGOA benefits will be activated when it forms its transitional government, expected in February.

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