AGOA preferences currently apply to approximately 6,500 tariff lines (at the HS8-digit level). This includes the approximately 5,000 tariff lines currently covered by the United States Generalised System of Preferences (GSP), plus tariff lines added by the AGOA legislation.
In addition, apparel sector tariff lines also qualify where countries have met the AGOA “apparel visa” requirements.
Newly-added AGOA products comprise inter alia previously excluded items such as footwear, luggage, handbags, watches, certain automotive components etc.Although the largest portion of AGOA-eligible items comprises goods that previously qualified under the GSP, the AGOA legislation adds a number of benefits, not least by removing the need for periodic GSP renewal (the products therefore qualify irrespective of GSP renewal - an issue that came to the fore in 2012 when the GSP was allowed to lapse for a few months), but also removes certain quantitative safeguards which place limits on the quantity or value of any one product imported under the GSP program. These are therefore a waiver from the GSP’s ‘Competitive Need Limitations’. The current GSP programme is authorised through July 31, 2013.