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These would include increasing the number of categories of African exports eligible for duty-free access to the US market from about 4, to 5,, which could lead to a 50 per cent rise in the value of African exports to the US, Mr. Clinton estimated. The President's initiative incorporates major portions of a Congressional bill which has backing from both parties in the legislature, and which will be finalized toward the end of the year.

Unlike the President's proposal, however, the Congressional bill includes a provision to allow quota-free imports of African textiles and apparel, a move that would benefit such African exporters as Mauritius and Kenya, but which is opposed by US clothing and fabric manufacturers.

Beyond the discussions between the administration and Congress, the initiative has prompted a wider public debate on US policy toward Africa. Skip to main content. You are here Home.

Talk Africa: Africa commodities trade

Ernest Harsch. Industrialized countries spotlight Africa.

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Summit of G-7 and Russia promises greater market access. From Africa Renewal:. July Russia to join debt relief efforts In addition to supporting implementation of the Highly Indebted Poor Countries HIPC initiative see article "Debtors queue up after Uganda deal" , the Denver summit marked an important opening toward debt relief on developing countries' obligations to Russia.

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Fighting African poverty, village by village. Also in this issue. In , the U. Congress extended AGOA through , the longest extension of the program. The Africa Office works closely with other U. The Africa Office also leads U.

Implementation approaches

The Africa Office maintains an ongoing dialogue with sub-Saharan African countries and works closely with other Africa trade policy stakeholders, including Members of Congress, the African and American private sectors, and civil society in the United States and sub-Saharan Africa. The U. There have been concerns, however, about the high trade imbalance between China and sub-Saharan African countries.


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Arguably, in order to boost the benefits of Chinese investment in African countries, manufacturing should be shifted to the continent rather than remaining in China. Manufacturing also needs to be established on the African continent in order to avoid what some are calling a new form of [economic] imperialism. The UN Habitat report, The State of African Cities The geography of African investment , indicates that there is in fact a diversification in Chinese investment in Africa, as well as an increase in the number of countries receiving investment.

What is all of this investment for?

Industrialized countries spotlight Africa

One of the major problems plaguing Africa is the lack of connectivity between cities, between rural and urban areas, and between people and opportunities. Healthcare, education, and sanitation infrastructure remains lacking. China is of course famous for its Belt and Road Initiative, which is set to connect huge swathes of the world via land and maritime infrastructure corridors. This means that African leaders and businesses will have to utilise Chinese investment in infrastructure projects in tandem with other sources of financing and partnerships.

Nigeria and Ghana also walked away from the summit with signed deals, Cooperation Agreements, and Memoranda of Understanding with China for projects in line with the BRI.

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Other African governments will need to strategically harness Chinese investment and infrastructure projects, and combine them with opportunities provided by other foreign sources. Corruption will be a significant hurdle for Africa to overcome in order to see their countries fully take advantage of Chinese policy on the continent. This raises another issue, and a significant difference between Chinese and Western approaches to foreign assistance.

Whereas the West tends to impose values often in accordance with foreign policy interests on the countries it gives aid to, China is strictly about business. The Chinese government refrains from imposing its political or foreign policy agenda on African countries.