Ethiopia has kicked off the New Year with promising trade reports, recording a 62 per cent increase in its exports to the US.
The country majorly exports textiles and garment products to the US and has invested a significant amount of money in infrastructure development such as industrial parks to boost the manufacturing industry.
Other commodities exported to the market include handicrafts and cur flowers.
Ethiopia, which has experienced a meteoric rise since last year in the wake of new leadership with an all-inclusion innovative mind under Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is poised to become the region’s second or third largest exporter under AGOA, African Growth and Opportunity Act. Ethiopia is among the 38 AGOA eligible countries.
Enacted on 18 May 2000, AGOA is a United States Trade Act, which enhances market access to the US for qualifying Sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries.
Since the inception of the Act Ethiopia’s AGOA exports increased by 150 per cent.
While the report may seem encouraging as a percentage, Ethiopia’s AGOA exports were only a mere $35 million in 2013.
Exports from Ethiopia, Rwanda, Uganda, Madagascar, Kenya, Tanzania, Mauritius and Burundi, the eight countries which benefit from the act, increased by 17 per cent between October 2017 and September 2018 to record a combined export worth of $1 billion.
During this period, Kenya which sits comfortably at the helm as the largest exporter among the eight countries accounted for $454 million.
According to atlas.media, the United States falls behind China, Switzerland, Netherlands and Saudi Arabia as top export destinations for Ethiopia.
However, the U.S has continued to invest in Africa’s fastest growing economy.
According to the Department of Commerce, U.S. exports of goods to Ethiopia supported an estimated eight thousand jobs in 2015.
Among the U.S top export categories to Ethiopia include civilian aircraft, cereals (wheat), machinery, electrical machinery, and vegetables (legumes).