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U.S. cuts off Ethiopia, Mali, Guinea from Africa duty-free trade program

Economy Jan 01, 2022 07:40PM ET
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2/2 © Reuters. U.S. flag atop the White House is pictured early in the morning after U.S. President Donald Trump was taken to hospital in the wake of his coronavirus disease (COVID-19) diagnosis, in Washington, D.C., U.S. October 3, 2020. REUTERS/Ken Cedeno TPX IMAG 2/2

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The United States on Saturday cut Ethiopia, Mali and Guinea from access to a duty-free trade program, following through on President Joe Biden's threat to do so over alleged human rights violations and recent coups.

"The United States today terminated Ethiopia, Mali and Guinea from the AGOA trade preference program due to actions taken by each of their governments in violation of the AGOA Statute," the U.S. Trade Representative's office said in a statement.

Biden said in November that Ethiopia https://www.reuters.com/article/us-ethiopia-conflict-trade-idCAKBN2HN1QQ would be cut off from the duty-free trading regime provided under the U.S. African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) due to alleged human rights violations in the Tigray region, while Mali and Guinea were targeted due to recent coups.

The suspension of benefits threatens Ethiopia's textile industry, which supplies global fashion brands, and the country's nascent hopes of becoming a light manufacturing hub. It also piles more pressure on an economy reeling from the conflict, the coronavirus pandemic, and high inflation.

"The Biden-Harris Administration is deeply concerned by the unconstitutional change in governments in both Guinea and Mali, and by the gross violations of internationally recognized human rights being perpetrated by the Government of Ethiopia and other parties amid the widening conflict in northern Ethiopia," the USTR statement said.

The AGOA trade legislation provides sub-Saharan African nations with duty-free access to the United States if they meet certain eligibility requirements, such as eliminating barriers to U.S. trade and investment and making progress toward political pluralism.

"Each country has clear benchmarks for a pathway toward reinstatement and the Administration will work with their governments to achieve that objective," it added.

The Washington embassies of the three African countries did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Ethiopia's Trade Ministry said it November it was "extremely disappointed" by Washington's announcement, saying the move would reverse economic gains and unfairly impact and harm women and children.

U.S. cuts off Ethiopia, Mali, Guinea from Africa duty-free trade program
 

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Comments (4)
sam Ala
sam Ala Jan 02, 2022 12:50AM ET
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David 9. Are you China bot? Lol.
LM LM
Nikonos Jan 02, 2022 12:50AM ET
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Mee too I'm a china bot!
James OLeary
James OLeary Jan 01, 2022 10:01PM ET
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racist
Chad RicherThanYou
Chad RicherThanYou Jan 01, 2022 9:05PM ET
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China will support these countries
Enamul Khan
Enamul Khan Jan 01, 2022 9:05PM ET
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China only exports; they don't import from other countries. China will provide them with high-interest loans and then take their country's freedom from them.
sam Ala
sam Ala Jan 01, 2022 7:01PM ET
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How about China human rights violation.. hmm. Only minor sanctions...
mad god
mad god Jan 01, 2022 7:01PM ET
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David David  is 50 cents' existance a propaganda too?
mad god
mad god Jan 01, 2022 7:01PM ET
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David David  so 50 cents is real? good.
mad god
mad god Jan 01, 2022 7:01PM ET
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David David  yes... tere is no actual proof that 50 cents is NOT propaganda too. so it is real
 
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