Nigeria yet to benefit from AGOA – Envoy

Nigerian Consul-General to Atlanta, U.S., Geoffery Teneilabe, yesterday said that Nigeria had not benefited enough from the African Growth and Opportunities Act (AGOA) programme.
Teneilabe stated this in an interview with newsmen in Lagos.
He said that contrary to the spirit of the programme, the U.S. Government had not been encouraging import of non-oil commodities from Nigeria.
AGOA was enacted to encourage countries in sub-Saharan Africa export garments and other non-oil products to the U.S.

Teneilabe said that the AGOA would be extended in 2015 but expressed regret that Nigeria had not enjoyed its benefits like other African countries.
According to him, Ghana, Mauritania and Gambia have immensely enjoyed the liberalised tariffs and duties on their exports to the U.S.
“The only export product from Nigeria that the U.S has largely encouraged is crude oil. This is not in line with the advocacy of the Nigerian Government to focus on the non-oil sector, especially agriculture.
“Nigerian exporters currently transport their goods to neighbouring countries in order to transmit them to the U.S. because restrictions are less strict in those countries,” he said.
Teneilabe appealed to developed nations to desist from formulating policies that could hamper global trade relations.
“They set some values that are not widely acceptable and they follow them strictly. Sometimes, they go as far as applying sanctions and discouraging their citizens from doing business with nations which do not accept these values. For the purpose of trade, there is a need for developed nations to set uniform values that will break bilateral trade barriers, “ he said.

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