U.S. End Market Analysis for Footwear from East Africa

Speeches Shim

While the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), passed in 2000 and extended in 2015 until 2025, provides duty-free access to the U.S. market for African footwear products, East African countries have for the most part struggled to take advantage of it.  Although Ethiopia exported, on average, a little over $25 million in footwear products per year to the U.S. from FY  2016-20, the rest of East Africa generated, in the aggregate, an average of just $0.332 million annually over that period. East Africa’s performance under AGOA is compounded by a slowing U.S. end market. Although the U.S. remains the largest footwear market in the world by a wide margin, the industry has stagnated; projected to result in slow growth for the next five years.

This report identifies four key market trends. First, continued strong growth is expected in the athletic/athleisure segment. Second, there will be a more pronounced orientation toward eco-friendly products. Customers are prepared to pay a premium for footwear made of recycled material or which are made using more sustainable production methods. Third, mass customization will offer the benefits of mass production while allowing customers to customize certain aspects of their footwear purchases.  Finally, “experientialisation” will see the rise of more brand-specific stores offering customized customer in-store experiences while providing brands with more rapid feedback on their products.

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Friday, April 30, 2021 - 8:15am

Last updated: April 30, 2021