On the eve of the 20th Agoa Forum 2023, the Biden Administration announced significant changes to the list of sovereign states that will be eligible for preferential trading access under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa). For 2024, the White House has reinstated the eligibility of Mauritania and terminated the eligibility of Central African Republic, Gabon, Niger and Uganda.
These actions carry significant domestic and foreign policy implications. One of the most important is that they will reinforce the notion that the Biden Administration sees Agoa as a useful tool for coercing African governments into alignment with US national security and foreign policy interests. That may be welcomed by Members of Congress. However, it could also lead to blowback from African governments.