Washington, D.C. – Today, the president signed into law the AGOA and MCA Modernization Act (H.R. 3445). The bipartisan legislation, authored by House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA), strengthens both the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and the Millennium Challenge Act (MCA) – key laws in the effort to encourage African economic independence and promote U.S.-Africa trade.

Chairman Royce on the AGOA and MCA Modernization Act becoming law: “This bill, at no cost to taxpayers, gives communities in Africa tools to strengthen their own economies. By doing so, we create U.S. trade partners rather than aid recipients. And with Africa’s consumer spending expected to reach hundreds of billions of dollars in the years ahead, this is also a great opportunity for U.S. business.

“I am proud to have been a strong supporter of AGOA and MCC from day one. Trade and free-market principles have helped lift more than a billion people out of poverty over the past decade alone. But it is not just this humanitarian goal that leads us to invest in communities abroad. As we’ve seen again and again, investments targeted toward growing more healthy, stable societies are good for our national security and good for American job creators.”

NOTE: This legislation enjoys broad support including Ranking Member Engel, Representatives Bass and Chris Smith, as well as Senators Corker, Cardin, Isakson and Coons. AGOA is landmark trade legislation first passed in 2000 to develop a trade relationship between the United States and the nations of sub-Saharan Africa. And MCA established the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), which provides large-scale grants to promote economic growth opportunities in developing countries committed to good governance. Together, these laws have helped increase trade between the U.S. and Africa.