Dorset-Based 'Freeport' Bid Tabled

Thursday 18th February 2021

A Freeport bid submitted by BCP council, Bournemouth Airport and Pool Harbour Commissioners is forecast, if successful, to boost the economy of Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole by £1.7bn over 20 years and create up to 5,600 jobs. This is the latest South West-based bid for Freeport status and with at least 10 Freeports to be created nationally, and the government expected to announce the first winning bid sites in March, the Westcountry is keeping its fingers (and toes) well and truly crossed!

For more information on this latest South West bid please read the bulletin below which was issued by Insider News today.

Roger Mundy, Managing Director, Beardsley Theobalds, 18th February 2021


Bid Submitted for Dorset-based Freeport

A Freeport bid has been submitted by BCP (Bournemouth, Christchurch & Poole) Council, Bournemouth Airport and Poole Harbour Commissioners.

It is believed that Freeport designation would boost the economy of Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole by £1.7bn over 20 years.

Supporters of the bid claim the status could boost post-Brexit investment through tax-reduction initiatives.

The council's bid for Freeport status includes a lower-tax "outer boundary" zone, which includes both Bournemouth Airport and the Port of Poole.

A new customs-exempt "freight corridor" would also be created between the port and airport. The council believes the Freeport would create up to 5,600 jobs across the region, over the first two decades.

The bidding process to establish new Freeports in England was opened in November by Chancellor Rishi Sunak, with a closing date for submissions this month.

With at least ten Freeports to be created, the first sites are expected in 2021, with an announcement possibly as soon as next month's Budget.

Designed to attract major domestic and international investment, areas given Freeport status will benefit from a wide package of tax reliefs, simplified customs procedures, a streamlined planning processes to boost redevelopment and government support to promote regeneration and innovation.