Thursday, May 26, 2022

Foreign Trade Zone Activated at Port of Vancouver USA

Foreign Trade Zone Activated at Port of Vancouver USA

In collaboration with US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the Foreign Trade Zone Board, the Port of Vancouver USA has activated Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) #296. One of the port’s wind energy customers will be the first to utilize the newly activated FTZ.

Foreign Trade Zones (FTZs) are important economic development tools that the port can utilize to help local companies and surrounding communities grow. FTZs offer a temporary duty-free zone to customers who are importing or manufacturing products from globally sourced materials. A duty is a tax levied by governments on the value of imported products. Often individual materials will have a higher duty rate than a finished product. The advantage of an FTZ is that it allows manufacturers to pay duty on the finished product rather than on the individual components, providing significant savings.

Foreign Trade Zones have many public benefits:

• Help facilitate and expedit international trade.

• Provide special customs procedures as a public service to help firms conduct international trade related operations in competition with foreign plants.

• Encourage and facilitate exports.

• Help attract offshore activity and encourage retention of domestic activity.

• Assist state/local economic development efforts.

• Help create employment opportunities.

The Port of Vancouver first began the detailed and lengthy process to become a Grantee of a Foreign Trade Zone in 2010. FTZ #296 was established in 2016 for the port and covers all of Clark County. Facilities outside port property, but within Clark County, can be activated as subzones for a specific company to use to take advantage of FTZ benefits. For example, if a bicycle manufacturer imports parts but assembles the bicycles in a factory within Clark County, their facility could be activated as a subzone so that the duty paid would be assessed on the finished bicycle and not on the individual components. All FTZs in Clark County are managed through the Port of Vancouver. Though the port is always looking for partners who can benefit from this FTZ, it has remained inactive since its establishment until now.

“As trade evolves, we continue to offer resources to help our customers keep their cargo moving. The activation of FTZ #296 offers another valuable tool for us to utilize so we can help further economic development within Southwest Washington,” said Jim Hagar, Economic Development Project Manager for the Port of Vancouver USA.
Source: Port of Vancouver USA

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