Foreign Trade Zone #20
The Virginia Port Authority holds the Grant of Authority for Foreign Trade Zone #20, which primarily serves southeastern Virginia. This zone was established through Foreign Trade Zone Board Order #105 on April 15, 1975, beginning with 22.5 acres and today encompassing over 10,000 acres. This Grant of Authority is established through the Foreign-Trade Zones Board, which is comprised of the U.S. Secretary of Commerce and the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury. The Board is chaired by the Secretary of Commerce. The Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection also plays a key role, as it did prior to its recent move from Treasury to the Department of Homeland Security, providing a position during the FTZ Board voting process with respect to customs security, control, and resource matters.
Foreign-trade zones are secure areas under supervision of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that are considered outside the customs territory of the United States for the purposes of duty payment. Located in or near customs ports of entry, they are the U.S. version of what are known internationally as free trade zones.
For more information please contact:
Development and Foreign Trade Zone Specialist
FTZ #20 Locations
View Virginia Foreign Trade Zone No. 20 Site List in a larger map
- DUTY DEFERRAL: Users can avoid paying duties on imported merchandise until the goods are removed from the FTZ and enter in the U.S. commerce. Duty on machinery is deferred until it is put into production; there is no duty paid on re-exports or scrap.
- INVERTED TARIFFS/DUTY REDUCTION: FTZ zone users can pay lower duty rates on goods produced in the zone when the finished product has a lower duty rate than the imported components and parts.
- WEEKLY ENTRIES: Zone users will benefit if they file multiple Customs and Border Protection entries each week. FTZs allow the user to file this paper work once a week at a rate no higher than $485.
- NO TIME CONSTRAINTS: Merchandise may remain in the zone indefinitely, whether or not it is subject to duty.
- CUSTOMS COMPLIANCE: Customs & Border Protection requirements and federal criminal sanctions are deterrents against theft. Cargo that is imported into FTZs have fewer incidents of loss and may result in lower insurance costs.
- Help facilitate and expedite international trade.
- Provide special customs procedures as a public service to help firms conduct international trade related operations in competition with foreign plants.
- Encourage and facilitate exports.
- Help attract offshore activity and encourage retention of domestic activity.
- Assist state/local economic development efforts
- Help create employment opportunities.
Wondering if your company could benefit from being in FTZ #20? Please click here to use a calculator to estimate your company’s potential savings from operating with foreign-trade zone status.