Foreign Trade Zone & Freeport

There is quite a bit of overlap of the FTZ and freeport exemptions. Freeport exempts inventory which is held in Texas for less than 175 days from property tax. The FTZ exempts any item imported from outside the U.S., regardless of the ultimate destination, and there is no time restriction. For example, inventory which is held in Austin for 90 days and then goes to Arkansas would be exempt under Freeport, but not FTZ. Inventory imported into an Austin FTZ from Japan which is sold to a customer in Fort Worth is exempt under FTZ, but not Freeport. Practically speaking, for jurisdictions which have a Freeport exemption, the incremental effect of the FTZ is to exempt inventory which has been imported from outside the U.S. and is destined for a Texas customer. All other inventory that might be exempt under the FTZ exemption is already exempt under Freeport. And, of course, the Freeport exemption applies to all property within the jurisdiction, while the FTZ exemption is site specific, applying only to inventory in activated FTZ space.