While on Sky News with Kay Burley Tory MP Rishi Sunak explained how using more free ports would greatly benefit the UK. He explained more manufacturing jobs could be created with the implementation of free ports across the country after Brexit. The Sky News host said: “We have had several of these free ports in the past including at Tilbury Docks which I believe closed in 2012.
“They were stopped because they were not successful. How will they be different this time?”
Mr Sunak answered: “Now that we have left the European Union we can do these free ports in a much more exciting and ambitious way.
“A UN report actually said the EU’s definition of a free port is very narrow.
“What we are planning is for some exciting areas with a range of tax incentives, streamlined red tape for planning and some facilitation around customs.
“What that will mean is private businesses will want to invest in these areas.
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The Sky News host questioned whether these free ports could be considered tax avoidance schemes.
“They will create jobs and drive trade in parts of the country where we want to see that growth.
“It is very much part of our levelling up agenda.
“These have been successful around the world outside of the EU and now we can put them into practice here.”
The Sky News host then questioned whether these free ports could be considered tax avoidance schemes.
The Chief Security of the Treasury closed by saying there was evidence from across the world that free ports created well-paying manufacturing jobs.
While laughing Mr Sunak denied that he believed these free ports facilitated tax avoidance before being interrupted by Ms Burley.
She said: “According to EU rules, they have said the lack of scrutiny of high-value items means that it facilitates tax avoidance.
“How are you going to facilitate a lack of scrutiny on these high ticket items?”
Mr Sunak replied: “I think it’s worth pointing out that the EU is pretty much the only place in the world that doesn’t use free ports.
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“For example, there are over 200 in the US employing several hundred thousand people.
“That is replicated around the world where close to a million people are employed in free ports and they are hubs of manufacturing activity.
“The US head of Customs and Border Protection told me a while ago he thinks their free trade zones are actually more secure than their regular ports because they go through vetting with the custom bodies before they get given free port status.”
The Chief Security to the Treasury closed by saying there was evidence from across the world that free ports created well-paying manufacturing jobs.