From coffee and chocolate to airplanes and oil, two-way trade between the United States and Africa is booming. That’s due largely to a reciprocal free trade agreement called the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).

Since that law went into effect in 2001, non-oil trade between the U.S. and Africa has tripled.

The theme of the 17th AGOA Forum, to be held in Washington July 11–12, is “Forging New Strategies for U.S.-Africa Trade and Investment.” Of particular interest is the importance of women, civil society and the private sector in powering economic growth.

Check out what top officials are saying about U.S.-Africa trade:

Small photo of President Trump (State Dept./Julia Maruszewski)

“Africa is a place of opportunity.”

— President Trump



Small photo of Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross (State Dept./Julia Maruszewski)“Our trade relationship is vital to the security and stability of both the United States and Africa.”

— U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross


Small photo of U.S.-Africa Business Center co-chair Aliko Dangote (State Dept./Julia Maruszewski)“American companies no longer see Africa as a steppingstone to global trade, but rather as the future of trade.”

— Aliko Dangote, co-chair of the U.S.-Africa Business Center
at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce


Small photo of African Development Bank president Akinwumi Adesina (State Dept./Julia Maruszewski)“A close partnership between the USA, the most powerful nation in the world, and Africa, the next investment growth frontier in the world, is so crucial. Let us be great together!”

— Akinwumi Adesina, president of the African Development Bank

(Inset photos @ AP Images)

A version of this article was previously published on July 17, 2017.