|How do I know if a zone is right for my community/company?
New Zone: The first things that should be done are 1) to assess the level of international trade in the area
and if there is a need for zone services for local companies and 2) to determine if is an existing zone(s) adjacent to the
CBP port(s) of entry that will already serve companies needs. A new zone can only be approved if the applicant
demonstrates that the existing zone(s) will not meet the "convenience of commerce." The application requirements are
extensive and the process is lengthy (requiring approx. 10 months after the FTZ Board “dockets” the completed
application). Also, if the zone is approved there are security and operating requirements that may be cost prohibitive
if there is not a strong need for zone services. It may be much more efficient (from time, resource, and cost
perspectives) to discuss with the existing zone(s) the sponsorship of subzones for companies in your community.
Subzone/usage-driven site: If a company is interested in pursuing FTZ designation for its facility,
the process under the FTZ Board’s 2012 regulations is quick (as little as 30 days with a maximum time of 5 months, depending on the
specific procedure used by the applicant) and straightforward. The FTZ Board staff and the grantee of your nearby FTZ(s) can provide
guidance on specific procedure to follow.
Production Authority: Any company interested in applying for production authority in a zone should perform a cost-benefit
analysis to make sure that the FTZ benefits outweigh the costs of operating in the zone. The first step to request production authority
is to submit a "Production Notification" The standard timeframe for the FTZ Board to make a decision on a production notification is
120 days from submission. If the FTZ Board determines not to authorize certain activity at the end of the notification process, the
applicant may choose to use the more extensive “application” process for production authority.
There is a simple duty estimator and additional information on the process available on the Production Toolbox Page.