George Hansen, Vancouver Island Economic Alliance president, describes the benefits of the federal government’s recognition of Vancouver Island as a foreign trade zone during an announcement hosted at Nanaimo Airport on Monday. CHRIS BUSH/The News Bulletin

Vancouver Island designated as foreign trade zone

Designation simplifies importing and exporting and provides duty relief

Companies now have a guy who knows a guy, so to speak, when it comes to importing and exporting goods to and from Vancouver Island and doing business with foreign customers.

The Vancouver Island Economic Alliance announced, at an event hosted at Nanaimo Airport on Monday, that the Island has been granted official status as a foreign trade zone by the federal government.

There are 11 foreign trade zones in Canada, but this is the first time the government has given FTZ status to an entire economic region, such as the Island. The model until now has been to only give the status to municipalities.

“This is the first time the government has designated a region the size of Vancouver Island, with 13 municipalities … and the FTZ office [Vancouver Economic Alliance] is an NGO. Usually it’s government,” said Bill Collins, chairman of Victoria-based train electronics systems manufacturer Quester Tangent.

Government recognition of region as a foreign trade zone essentially acknowledges that region has a network of services and programs, such as customs-bonded warehousing, that can streamline processes for companies that want to import or export products to and from the region and conduct trade with foreign markets.

“The most significant part of this is businesses on Vancouver Island having access to government programs that defer taxes and duty,” said George Hansen, VIEA president. “The cash flow implications for that, particularly for anyone who’s working in volumes, is enormous.”

The foreign trade zone designation is a product of the work started in 2006 when the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance was formed to organize Vancouver Island municipalities into an economic region.

To learn more about FTZ-V.I., click this link.



photos@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Man, 50, dies following incident in downtown Parksville

Teenage girl hailed as hero for intervening after witnessing situation unfold

Still no firm plan for cold-weather shelter in Parksville

BC Housing says community partners will present their plans in ‘coming weeks’

Ballenas JV Whalers reach final four in Subway Bowl competition

Gridiron squad tames Timberwolves 28-6, will face South Kamloops in semifinals

VIDEO: Disney Plus adds disclaimer about racist stereotypes

Disney’s disclaimer is a good way to begin discussion about the larger issue of racism

Vancouver police officer charged with sexual assault in apparent off-duty incident

Jagraj Roger Berar, 51, of Surrey, charged in incident alleged to have happened in Whistler

CN Rail confirms job cuts as weakening economy cuts into freight volumes

Railroad also said it was affected by a slowdown in the B.C.’s forestry sector

Port Alberni mom takes school district to court over Indigenous smudging, prayer in class

Candice Servatius, who is an evangelical Christian, is suing School District 70

New case of vaping-related illness in Quebec brings national total to 8

Quebec health minister considering tightening the rules around vaping products

Greens to vote against Liberal throne speech unless carbon targets toughened: May

Green leader Elizabeth May and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met Friday, discussing common ground

Batten down the hatches: Wet and windy weekend on the way for coastal B.C.

Environment Canada issues special weather warning for Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island

First Nations ‘optimistic’ about road upgrades after Horgan visits site of fatal bus crash

Premier travelled Bamfield Main road, where bus flipped last September and two students were killed

Most Read