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Greater KC Foreign Trade Zone Celebrates 50 Years Serving the KC Region

by Mary Rooney | Oct 04, 2021

The Greater Kansas City Foreign Trade Zone (GKCFTZ) is celebrating 50 years of being the grantee for the Kansas City region. In 1971, with the help of multiple community business leaders, the GKCFTZ was formed as the first nonprofit corporation to receive a Grant of Authority to establish and operate Foreign Trade Zones in the U.S. 

With the region’s central location and extensive logistics infrastructure, the Kansas City business leaders that helped create the GKCFTZ in 1971 saw an opportunity to grow international trade activity in the region with the goal of stimulating economic growth. Ultimately, Foreign Trade Zones (FTZs) are designed to promote American competitiveness by reducing, deferring or eliminating duties on goods sourced overseas then brought into Zones for value-added work by U.S. employees, and thereafter entered into U.S. commerce or exported. In addition, FTZs are recognized as a “best industry practice” by U.S. Customs and Border Protection because they significantly improve supply chain security. The program is an incentive for firms to maintain and expand operations in the U.S. and entice foreign companies to establish U.S. operations.

Today, the GKCFTZ sponsors Zone 15 in Kansas City, Missouri, and Zone 17 in Kansas City, Kansas. GKCFTZ is one of the largest zones in the country with more than  450 million square feet of approved foreign trade zone space that includes General Purpose and Subzone space in both Kansas and Missouri.

Visit gkcftz.com to learn more. 


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