U.S. to end duty-free access for Ethiopia, Mali, Guinea

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U.S. President Joe Biden speaks astatine a gathering during the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) successful Glasgow, Scotland, Britain, November 2, 2021. REUTERS/Yves Herman

WASHINGTON, Nov 2 (Reuters) - The United States plans to region Ethiopia, Mali and Guinea from the statement that gives them duty-free entree to the United States, President Joe Biden said successful a missive to Congress, citing quality rights violations.

The determination comes amid ongoing struggle and famine successful Ethiopia's bluish portion of Tigray and aft coups d'etat successful Guinea successful September and successful Mali past year.

Biden said Ethiopia was not successful compliance with the African Growth and Opportunity Act's (AGOA) eligibility requirements "for gross violations of internationally recognized quality rights."

Guinea and Mali had not made advancement toward establishing regularisation of instrumentality and governmental pluralism, and Mali had failed to found workers' rights and quality rights, Biden's missive said.

"Despite intensive engagement betwixt the United States and the Governments of Ethiopia, Guinea, and Mali, these governments person failed to code United States concerns astir their non-compliance with the AGOA eligibility criteria," it said.

AGOA provides sub-Saharan African nations with duty-free entree to the United States if they conscionable definite eligibility requirements, specified arsenic eliminating barriers to U.S. commercialized and concern and making advancement towards governmental pluralism.

U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai said successful a connection that she would supply the countries with wide benchmarks for getting backmost into compliance with AGOA’s requirements and enactment with them to execute that objective.


War broke retired successful bluish Ethiopia successful November 2020 betwixt national troops and the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), the ruling enactment of Tigray. Since then, determination has been expanding planetary disapproval of rights abuses successful Tigray, including wide intersexual unit and wide killings of civilians.

Ethiopian authorities spokesperson Legesse Tulu said the authorities had already commented connected the issue. On Oct. 3, Tulu said connected Twitter that the suspension would outgo Ethiopia 1 cardinal jobs.

Ethiopia exported astir $237 cardinal worthy of goods duty-free to the United States nether AGOA successful 2020, according to U.S. Commerce Department data.

U.S.-based apparel institution The Children's Place and Sweden's H&M, which root covering from Ethiopia, did not respond instantly to requests for comment.

Reporting by Simon Lewis, Doina Chiacu, Maggie Fick, Duncan Miriri, Ayenat Mersie and Katherine Houreld; Editing by Alistair Bell and Steve Orlofsky

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