National Association of Foreign-Trade Zones (NAFTZ)

At the National Association of Foreign-Trade Zones, we connect global businesses with local communities through the U.S. Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) Program. Our membership —which comprises public entities, public and private companies and individuals—works together to foster business growth, economic development and U.S. employment.

What is a Foreign-Trade Zone?

Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ) are secured, designated locations around the United States in or near a U.S. Customs Port of Entry where foreign and domestic merchandise is generally considered to be in international commerce and outside of US Customs territory. As a result, activated businesses in an FTZ can reduce or eliminate duty on imports and take advantage of other benefits to encourage foreign commerce within the United States.

Created by Congress in the Foreign-Trade Zones Act of 1934, Foreign-Trade Zones continue to thrive to better meet the needs of American companies in the global economy. Foreign-Trade Zones continue to be a vital resource for trade in the United States. According to its 2019 Annual Report to Congress, the Foreign-Trade Zones Board notes that were 193 active FTZ programs across the United States, employing approximately 460,000 people at approximately 3,300 businesses, and importing over $767 billion in shipments.

Certain types of merchandise can be imported into a Zone without going through formal Customs entry procedures or paying import duties. Customs duties and excise taxes are due only at the time of transfer from the FTZ for U.S. consumption. If the merchandise never enters the U.S. commerce, then no duties or taxes are paid on those items.

Please learn more here or contact IRPT Member:

Jeffrey Tafel, President
(202) 331-1950 x226