10 freeports coming up in post-Brexit UK
The freeports are expected to attract new businesses, create jobs and spread investment and opportunity to towns and cities across the UK.Updated: Feb 11, 2020 05:19 IST
Keen to compensate for the loss of access to the European Single Market after Brexit, the Boris Johnson government on Monday announced the setting up of up to ten new innovative ‘freeports’ to boost trade and revenue from 2021.
Rishi Sunak, chief secretary to the Treasury, said: “Freeports will unleash the potential in our proud historic ports, boosting and regenerating communities across the UK as we level up. They will attract new businesses, spreading jobs, investment and opportunity to towns and cities up and down the country”.
“This is all part of our mission as an open, outward-looking country, championing global free trade with vibrant Freeports that work for all of the UK”.
Benefits of the freeports include goods brought in not attracting tariffs until they leave the freeport and enter the domestic market; no duty is payable if the goods 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, which can reduce relocation or investment costs for existing manufacturing sites near ports. A full customs declaration would also not be required to move goods into a Freeport, making it easier to import goods.
Liz Truss, International Trade secretary, said: “We are taking back control of our trade policy, and opening every corner of the UK to opportunities across the world”.
“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”.
After a 10-week consultation, the government will invite sea, air and rail ports to bid for freeport status on a competitive basis.