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Office of the United States Trade Representative.
The United States Trade Representative (USTR) has determined that Cote d'Ivoire has adopted an effective visa system and related procedures to prevent unlawful transshipment and the use of counterfeit documents in connection with shipment of textile and apparel articles and has implemented and follows, or making substantial progress toward implementing and following, the customs procedures required by the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). Therefore, imports of eligible products from Cote d'Ivoire qualify for the textile and apparel benefits provided under the AGOA.
December 17, 2003.Start Further Info
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Patrick Coleman, Director for African Affairs, Office of the United States Trade Representative, (202) 395-9514.End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information
The AGOA (Title I of the Trade and Development Act of 2000, Pub. L. 106-200, as amended by section 3108 of the Trade Act of 2002) provides preferential tariff treatment for imports of certain textile and apparel products of beneficiary sub-Saharan African Countries. The textile and apparel trade benefits under the AGOA are available to imports of eligible products from countries that the President designates as “beneficiary sub-Saharan African countries,” provided that these countries: (1) Have adopted an effective visa system and related procedures to prevent unlawful transshipment and the use of counterfeit documents; and (2) have implemented and follow, or are making substantial progress toward implementing and following, certain customs procedures that assist the Customs Service in verifying the origin of the products.
In Proclamation 7561 (May 16, 2002), the President designated Cote d'Ivoire as a “beneficiary sub-Saharan African country” and proclaimed that, for purposes of section 112(b)(3)(B) of the AGOA, Cote d'Ivoire shall be considered a lesser developed beneficiary sub-Saharan African country. In Proclamation 7350 (October 2, 2002), the President delegated to the USTR the authority to determine whether designated countries have met the two requirements described above. The President directed the USTR to announce any such determinations in the Federal Register and to implement them through modifications of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS). Based on actions that Cote d'Ivoire has taken, I have determined that Cote d'Ivoire has satisfied these two requirements.
Accordingly, pursuant to the authority vested in the USTR by Proclamation 7350, U.S. note 7(a) to subchapter II of chapter 98 of the HTS, and U.S. notes 1 and 2(d) to subchapter XIX of chapter 98 of the HTS are each modified by inserting “Cote d'Ivoire” in alphabetical sequence in the list of countries. The foregoing modifications to the HTS are effective with respect to articles entered, or withdrawn from warehouse for consumption, on or after the effective date of this notice. Importers claiming preferential tariff treatment under the AGOA for entries of textile and apparel articles should ensure that those entries meet the applicable visa requirements. See Visa Requirements Under the African Growth and Opportunity Act, 66 FR 7837 (2001).Start Signature
Robert B. Zoellick,
United States Trade Representative.
[FR Doc. 03-31133 Filed 12-16-03; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3190-W3-M