The Anonymous Widower

Eight New Freeports Set To Open In The UK

Today, in his 2021 Budget, Rishi Sunak announced eight new freeports.

This article on the BBC, which is entitled Freeports: What Are They And Where Will They Be?, gives a brief guide to the freeports.

This links link to the nearest I can find to an official web site for each of the freeports.

The Government has said that the freeports will start their operations late this year.

March 3, 2021 - Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. I understand freeports promote regeneration and innovation with tax reliefs, simplified customs procedures, streamlined planning processes. In that case why not make the whole country a freeport?

    Comment by JohnC | March 4, 2021 | Reply

    • Any company willing to go through a lengthy administrative procedure and commit to ongoing paperwork and audit can set up effectively the same thing as a Freeport for their own business. This is a bonded warehouse or supply chain.

      And all of Singapore is effectively a Freeport, taxes payable when goods are made available for local sale/use

      Comment by MilesT | March 4, 2021 | Reply

  2. I suspect the EU would object and we shouldn’t forget that Ulster always says No! or causes others to say No!

    Comment by AnonW | March 4, 2021 | Reply

  3. Still I find it puzzling that a previous Tory government abolished freeports because research showed they didn’t work and damaged other areas which did not benefit from the tax concessions. What has changed?

    Comment by JohnC | March 4, 2021 | Reply

    • @JohnC

      Freeports were less useful when the UK was part of a large customs union, so much of the “export” was within the union, and no issues of “double duty” (and similar issues of duty preferences). Bigger businesses could choose to have bonding arrangements, more to defer duty payment than for resolving double duty issues on exports to countries outside the customs union. And major freight forwarders usually have bonding to cover goods in transit.

      Since the amount of exporting which would have double duty has increased (no longer part of a customs union) then freeports are more useful, especially for smaller businesses that would struggle with admin needed to run a bonded warehouse or supply chain.

      Comment by MilesT | March 6, 2021 | Reply

      • Thanks for that!

        I wonder about Hitachi, who at Newton Aycliffe could be within the freeport. They are now building their own body shells at the plant and probably only import components for their trains, which are also part of their A train family, which is used in many places in the world.

        As they have stated that they are looking for export orders and are developing a battery electric high speed train, which sounds like a good export proposition, I feel that a freeport might help them.

        Interestingly, the batteries for these trains are being designed and built by Hyperdrive Innovation in Sunderland., in a factory, that is less than thirty miles from Middlesbrough. As Hyperdrive do some exports and their factory seems to have changed hands, could Hyperdrive and Hitachi have advantages, by both being inside the freeport?

        Comment by AnonW | March 6, 2021

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