US Lawmakers push for Africa trade

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A bipartisan group of senior U.S. lawmakers on Thursday proposed to extend another trade law that has boosted clothing imports from Africa.

The unusual combination is driven by the fast-approaching expiration of existing laws and the desire to continue programs generally regarded as successful by lawmakers. 

“This must-do legislation has strong bipartisan and broad industry support. It will benefit U.S. global competitiveness, aid U.S. employment and global development, and strengthen our ties with fifty-five U.S. trading partners in Africa and the Western Hemisphere,” House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp, a Michigan Republican, said in  a statement.

The legislation renews a provision that waives U.S. import duties on clothing made in sub-Saharan African countries, even if the fabric or yarn to make the garment comes from a third country such as China. The legislation renews the measure until September 2015, when the entire African Growth and Opportunity Act will be up for renewal. That law was originally passed in 2000.

(The Daily Monitor)