The USAID Southern Africa Trade and Investment Hub boosts trade and investment with and within Southern Africa.

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Beginning May 6, 2020, the USAID TradeHub, in partnership with the Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC) and in close collaboration with the U.S. Embassy in Lesotho, will be piloting a program to support textile and apparel companies in the country to produce Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The initiative has a fourfold aim to buttress Lesotho’s textiles sector: assist manufacturers willing to shift their production to PPE; save some of the jobs lost to the pandemic; ensure healthcare workers and the general population have access to much-needed masks and other essential equipment; and support PPE exports to South Africa and the United States. Activities under this initiative will conform to Lesotho’s national COVID-19 response and lockdown regulations. Seven criteria, developed by the USAID TradeHub, will be used to select participating manufacturers. In addition to working with the LNDC, the USAID TradeHub will appoint a U.S-based trade promotion service provider to facilitate exporters’ compliance with U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control requirements. U.S. government agencies in South Africa and Lesotho will support the scheme at a government-to-government level to address cross-border supply chain constraints as well as to navigate the regulatory environment in South Africa and the United States.


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