The Dutch Institute for Transport and Logistics (Kennisinstituut voor Mobiliteit, KiM) investigated the case of the British freeports to be developed as places of settlement.
Freeports are seaport areas located within the geographical borders of a country (the UK in this case), but do not belong to the customs territory. In these areas, companies enjoy tax exemption and other benefits. The UK government has designated 7 seaport areas in the UK as Freeports. The benefits offered by Freeports may be attractive to some businesses.
The study concludes that Freeports have the potential to negatively affect the competitive position of Dutch seaports, but the authors do not consider that this development will likely lead to major relocations of companies from Dutch seaports.
According to ESC, it is important to follow closely the development of the designated Freeports in the UK. Unfair competition and, thus, a negative impact of these Freeports on all Western European port areas must be avoided.
For the study, please see here.