Ports & FTZs: Expand The Reach Of Commerce

Support from federal and local governments has allowed ports across the United States to increase its import and export capabilities. 

FTZ Opportunities Abound In Irving-Las Colinas, Texas

Since Congress signed the concept into legislation in the Foreign-Trade Zones Act of 1934, Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ) have empowered American companies to compete more effectively in an increasingly globalized economy. They are generally located in areas with geographic trade advantages, such as international airports, major seaports, and national frontiers.

Dallas/Fort Worth International Airpor
Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport’s on-airport FTZ sits on 2,400 acres. (Photo: DALLAS/FORT WORTH INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT)

Merchandise entering a Zone may be stored, displayed, tested, sampled, repaired, cleaned, salvaged, destroyed, relabeled, repackaged, manipulated, mixed, processed, assembled, manufactured, and exported without the intervention of U.S. customs authorities. A zone’s status may also make sites eligible for local and state tax benefits.

Companies can utilize FTZs for warehousing, inspection, labeling, salvaging, and distribution. Logistics-related firms, consumer electronics, oil refining, pharmaceuticals, and vehicles/automotive parts are manufacturing industries that benefit from FTZ. Retail is not allowed.

Irving-Las Colinas, TX offers numerous options—thanks to its centralized location in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex and proximity to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. It offers companies access to some of the region’s best logistics resources. With Freeport Exemptions available from many area taxing jurisdictions, Irving-Las Colinas’ nearby location to DFW Airport provides excellent benefits.

Irving-Las Colinas also offers approximately 46.7 million square feet of industrial/flex space due to planned development in the business district along SH 161 south of DFW Airport. Foreign Trade Zone No. 39 features a Class A business park with highway access to SH 114, SH 183, and a convenient location near I-635.

DFW Airport’s on-airport FTZ includes a total area of 2,400 acres with 105 buildings, containing approximately 31 million square feet of warehouse and distribution space. Companies taking advantage of this include Airbus Helicopters, B.I.G. Logistics, CEVA International, Dallas Airmotive, DHL Global Forwarding, Hitachi High Technologies America, Menzies Aviation, Mountain Plumbing Products, Omron America, Schenker, Inc., and UPS Supply Chain Solutions, Inc.

If companies want FTZ status but cannot locate in a predesignated area, DFW Airport can sponsor company-specific FTZs within an eight-county area through the Alternative Site Framework (ASF) process. DFW is the only North Texas FTZ to have the ASF process and was one of the first to be authorized by the U.S. Department of Commerce for ASF operations.

Irving-Las Colinas is experiencing high construction activity at DFW Airport, including approximately eight million square feet constructed and leased in the East DFW Airport/Las Colinas submarket. It alone has 68.3 million square feet of industrial/flex inventory and a low vacancy rate.

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FTZs are sites approved and administered by U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Foreign-Trade Zones Board and located in or near U.S. Customs Ports of Entry, where foreign and domestic merchandise is considered outside the country for the purposes of duty payment.

FTZs promote international competitiveness of U.S.-based businesses because Zone activities primarily involve domestic operations combining foreign inputs with significant domestic inputs. Zones encourage investment, manufacturing, and logistics, facilitate and expedite international trade, and retain and create jobs in the United States. Businesses operating in FTZs can reduce duty and tax costs and streamline their production and processes.

Visit irvingchamber.com for more information.

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