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Understanding Free-Trade Zones

Throughout his career as a legal professional in Iran, Dr. Shahram Shirkhani has acted as an advisor on a number of projects undertaken by the Iranian government. In particular, Dr. Shirkhani helped secure financing for the establishment of the Qeshm and Kish free-trade zones.

Defined as geographical areas that contain no international trade barriers, free-trade zones allow for the entry of goods into a country for processing. Countries offer a wide range of economic benefits in areas
designated as free-trade zones, including inverted tariff relief, exemption from import and export taxes, and the deferral of customs duties. Thus free-trade zones improve the market presence of a region and make international trade and investment more attractive.

In general, free-trade zones appear near a country’s primary ports of entry and exit, usually seaports and airports. However, some countries may choose to establish a free-trade zone in a non-port location, typically to meet the needs of a particular industry or investor.

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