Windhoek – Namibia and the United States have launched the Namibia African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) Utilisation Strategy to increase the Southern African country’s trans-Atlantic exports.
This week, the Namibian Government also inked a €100 million (US$121 million) development finance deal to improve food security, water and sanitation, climate change mitigation, and project financing.
Namibian Minister of Trade and SMEs Development Lucia Iipumbu and US Ambassador to Namibia Lisa Johnson this week said the SADC member could can now export more than 6,400 products tariff-free to the United States.
A body composed of private and public sector representatives will drive implementation of the AGOA strategy.
Ambassador Johnson said among products Namibia could export to the US were meat and meat products, dates, specialty foods, leather handbags, handicrafts and accessories, and cosmetics.
“The US government will continue to support Namibian firms with market entry and trade-enhancing services to meet the U.S. market entry requirements and increase exports from the priority sectors,” she said.
Ambassador Johnson went on, “I am grateful for the efforts of the Government of Namibia, along with its partners and stakeholders to ensure the AGOA Utilisation Strategy was finalised and now launched. I look forward to the strategy’s implementation and to Namibian companies taking full advantage of the opportunities presented by the AGOA programme to benefit Namibians.”
In the €100 million deal with Germany, Namibian Finance Minister Ipumbu Shiimi said the financial support would boost his country’s efforts to improve the water sector, combat climate change and steer sustainable development.
The funds will be channelled through the Development Bank of Namibia and the Agriculture Bank of Namibia.
Germany’s top diplomat in Windhoek, Ambassador Herbert Beck, said the release of the funds was a demonstration of the growing ties between the two countries.
“€50 million will be provided for the upgrading of the water infrastructure in Windhoek by modernising and expanding Gammams Wastewater Treatment Plant. The investment will more than double the capacity of the plant from 25,000 cubic metres to 50,000 cubic metres of water treatment per day,” Ambassador Beck said.
€30 million will finance climate change infrastructure-related projects, and the remaining €20 million will be channelled towards agricultural activities by rural households.