A consultation has been launched setting out the Government’s vision for Freeports, with the aim of announcing the location of the new zones at the end of this year so they can be open for business in 2021.
Secretary of State for International Trade, Liz Truss, said: "Freeports will unleash the potential of our historic ports, creating jobs and regenerating communities across the UK. These hubs will also deepen partnerships around the world as we restore our economic and political independence."
Communities and Local Government Secretary, Robert Jenrick, said: "Our new Freeports will drive forward investment and regeneration, delivering high-skilled jobs and new homes for people across the country."
Benefits of the 2020 Freeports model could include:
- Goods brought into a Freeport do not attract tariffs until they leave the Freeport and enter the domestic market.
- No duty is payable if they are re-exported.
- When raw materials are imported and processed into a final good, duties are only paid on the final good.
- Freeports could be located inland as well as adjacent to ports. This can reduce relocation or investment costs for existing manufacturing sites near ports.
- A full customs declaration would not be required to move goods into a Freeport. This saves businesses time and makes it easier to import goods.
- Planning reforms to help sea ports develop within their boundaries and empower local councils to greenlight much-needed local construction projects.