This special feature surveys southern Africa's potential for apparel exports in the light of free access to the US market. The current talking point in Sub-Saharan Africa is America's new free-trade legislation - the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), signed by President Clinton on May 18th. The Act forms a major part of the Trade and Development Act (TDA) of 2000, which also covers trade between the USA and various Caribbean countries. It aims to promote stable and sustainable economic growth and development in the Sub-Saharan region, principally by removing US import tariffs. This opens up a huge prospective market for African apparel exporters.