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Obama issues proclamation on SA-US meat deal

The US president has welcomed the steps taken by SA’s govt to restore access for US poultry, pork and beef.

FILE. Agoa is an agreement that opens up American markets to South African goods. Picture: freeimages.com

JOHANNESBURG - United States President Barack Obama has issued a proclamation revoking the pending suspension of South Africa from the African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa) following the finalisation of the deal.

Obama had previously warned that if American chicken is not on South African shelves by 15 March, the country would lose access to important trade deals.

In a statement issued last night, Obama welcomed the significant steps taken by the South African government to restore access for US poultry, pork and beef.

Last month, US ambassador to South Africa Patrick Gaspard said with the Agoa trade agreement ironed out, the hope is that it can now start growing the local economy.

Agoa is an agreement that opens up American markets to South African goods.

One of the most contentious aspects has been the import of chicken into the local market.

Gaspard said the negotiations were tough, but always dignified.

He said recent political claims that America was somehow trying to destabilise South Africa will not damage the diplomatic relationship between the nations, which he described as having a "deep reservoir of trust".

LISTEN: _Is Agoa going to result in the collapse of SA's poultry industry? _