Will AGOA be renewed in 2015?

Rosa Whitaker, who helped create the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) as assistant USTR for Africa under President Clinton, thinks that AGOA may not be renewed.

Instead, the idea gaining currency in Washington is a version of trade preference reform in which Agoa-like benefits are extended to all “least developed countries”, leaving Africa with no exclusive trade benefits and SA [South Africa], with its middle-income status, completely out of the loop.

Though a relaxed rule of origin for fabric inputs will expire at the end of 2012, AGOA won’t expire until 2015, so I think it’s a bit early to be sounding alarm bells. The US is supposed to strike a Doha deal in the meantime, for example.

Previous posts on AGOA include thinking about identification, dynamic vs static gains, and binding constraints.