With the European Union (EU) opening duty-free market for 9 600 products including textile by October, Swazilandâ€™s textile industry will again retain its vibrancy that was impaired due to the loss of African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) almost two years ago.
Through the implementation of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) countries are allowed to export goods to the EU, duty-free under AGOA. The country is in the process of ratifying the agreement with the assistance of the EU.
EUâ€™s Gijs Berends speaking at the EU offices on Friday disclosed that once the ratification came to an end, the country will benefit through shipping its goods to the union without delay.
The EU was giving an update of the progress regarding the ratification process. A delegation from the EU assisting Swaziland with the process held a workshop on Friday where industry players were made aware of the benefits of the agreement.
The EPA agreement will liberalise 9 600 products and all the products will enter their market duty-free. It has to be mentioned that this will not be just a temporary trade agreement but a permanent one.
Berends said that they are looking forward to seeing Swaziland becoming a beneficiary from the market as that would positively contribute to its economic development.
Through EPA agreement, Swaziland would become more competitive and attractive to investors who would be looking at accessing the lucrative EU market.
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