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Madagascar to host textile event in November to boost domestic industry

Origin Africa will be held in Madagascar from November 3 to 5, 2016. This is an international trade fair for textiles and clothing. It will be the engine for the revival of Madagascar’s textile industry, which was affected by the global financial and economic crisis of 2008 and the suspension of the country’s eligibility from the United States’ African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) in January 2010.

Amid the political crisis in Madagascar in 2009, the US suspended from 2010 to 2014 Madagascar’s eligibility to AGOA, a program allowing qualified African countries to export a wide range of goods including textile and clothing duty-free to the US. As a result AGOA privileges were removed, hundreds of thousands of jobs were lost, making the country among the poorest in the world.

Through this fair, Madagascar aims to regain its place in the first rank among African countries in terms of textile exports and is planning to export about 100 million dollars worth of textile products. The country currently ranks fourth in Africa behind Kenya, Lesotho and Mauritius.

Before the crisis in 2009, Madagascar’s exports of textile and clothing were worth around $350 million a year but the export value dropped to $15 million in 2010 amid the suspension of the country from AGOA.