Canada Makes Improvements To Foreign Trade Zones
by Mike Godfrey, Tax-News.com, Washington
02 September 2013
The Canadian Government is to improve the marketing of its Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) programs, which offer duty and tax exemptions, in an effort to help businesses reduce trading costs.
The Government will set aside CAD5m (USD4.7m) over the next five years for the promotion of what it says is Canada’s FTZ advantage, in an effort to attract foreign investment in manufacturing, processing, and distribution hubs in strategic locations throughout the country. Organizations accessing this funding will need to match the amount received on a one-to-one basis with money from non-federal sources.
Acting on the advice of stakeholders, the Government has also consolidated all the advice on its FTZ programming into a comprehensive new webpage. It provides a central source of information, where more details on the funding initiative will be made available soon.
Finance Minister Jim Flaherty’s 2013 Budget introduced a package of measures to improve existing FTZ programs. The Budget simplified the application process for accessing FTZ programs and introduced service standards for application processing times. It also eliminated the annual registration fee for the Customs Bonded Warehouse Program, and set out plans for enhancing delivery of FTZ programs at strategic locations across the country.
Commenting on the changes, Eric Waltz, President of Global Container Terminals Canada, said: “Many stakeholders across the country have been working with the federal government to strengthen Canada’s foreign trade zone program. The Government of Canada has shown significant vision and leadership in building the country’s trading gateways, and enhancing our FTZ program is the next logical step in ensuring Canada remains competitive internationally.”