Rob Jenkins, CEO of Barbourne Brook, gives his views on Freeports. Jenkins notes that with the recent changes to customs legislation, businesses need to understand all of their options.
"Changes to customs legislation has moved from three EU legislations to over 40 pieces of UK legislation, businesses are certainly feeling the pressure and at a time where resources are lacking. Businesses aren’t always clear that they are required to take steps in order to make customs declarations and prepare for 2022. However, technology within the sector is making things far easier. The software is getting far more advanced and integrated due to the rise in interest in customs. We are building analytical tools based on big data and artificial intelligence to help people understand any changes from a customs point of view and we’re seeing a lot of this in the sector.
"Freeports are not the answer for every business and two concepts that should be intrinsically linked when discussing Freeports are customs and tax. When linking the customs benefits with the tax incentives, Freeports should be worthwhile for businesses, but businesses need to understand all of their options, alongside the cost benefits of those options. Without assessing this, businesses could find themselves investing in the wrong area. It is essential to understand that Freeports are a useful tool, but they are not the only tool in the box."