A Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) is a secure region in the U.S. that is considered outside customs territory while still subject to Customs regulations. Also known as a free-trade zone, FTZs encourage and expedite U.S. participation in international trade by equalizing the treatment of U.S. and foreign trade activities. By allowing U.S. businesses to defer or even eliminate duties related to import and export activities, FTZs help businesses operating in the U.S. save money and be more competitive.
FTZs Benefit Your Business
FTZs can save your business money in a number of ways. Here are a few examples:
- Duty Deferral – Avoid paying duties on imported merchandise until the merchandise is removed from the FTZ and enters U.S. commerce.
- Duty Reduction – Get relief through inverted tariffs when you use imported components in production activity. Apply the lower duty to the foreign content to be competitive with offshore producers.
- Duty Elimination – Avoid duties and drawback on merchandise that is re-exported or destroyed.
- Reduced Merchandise Processing Fees (MPF) – Instead of filing multiple Customs entries per week, file as little as one per week, capping the MPF payment to $485 per week or approximately $26k per year.
- No Time Constraints on Storage – Merchandise may remain in an FTZ indefinitely, whether or not it is subject to duty.
- More Easily Meet Exportation Requirements – Merchandise can be transferred from the Customs territory to an FTZ to satisfy export requirements.
- Increased Security and Lower Insurance Costs – The increased Customs & Border Protection security requirements for FTZs, as well as federal criminal sanctions, not only deter theft but can also lower insurance premiums.
FTZs Benefit the Public
An FTZ can not only benefit your business but also the American public in the following ways:
- Creates U.S. employment opportunities.
- Boosts state and local development efforts.
- Encourages exports.
- Attracts offshore and increases domestic activities in the U.S.
- Increases security.
- Expedites international trade.
- Makes a more robust Global Supply Chain for happier end customers.
- Provides special Customs & Border Protection procedures to help companies conduct international trade operations in competition with foreign plants.