Statement from U.S. Embassy Pretoria regarding President Obama’s January 11, 2016 Proclamation on AGOA

Media Advisory | Tuesday, January 12, 2016
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

On January 11, 2016, President Obama signed a proclamation regarding the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), requiring the entry of U.S. poultry into South Africa before March 15, 2016.  This proclamation does not immediately suspend AGOA trade benefits for South Africa.  As has been reported in the media, U.S. negotiators have worked closely with South Africa, particularly over the last 60 days, to remove barriers to South African imports of U.S. poultry, pork, and beef.  On January 6, 2016, we agreed on the remaining issues that prevented such trade.  We appreciate the efforts of South Africa’s Ministers of Trade, Agriculture, and Health and their staff to reach an agreement which protects thousands of South African jobs and our trade ties.

Now that the substantive points of disagreement have been resolved, we expect the resumption of trade in the three meats to take place smoothly and expeditiously.  Under the proclamation, AGOA benefits will only be at risk of suspension if trade in poultry does not resume by March 15.  U.S. and South African officials are working now to ensure the first imports of U.S. poultry arrive in South Africa as soon as possible, well ahead of the March 15 deadline.

To review the proclamation, please visit:  https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/01/11/presidential-proclamation-take-certain-actions-under-african-growth-and

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