The Kingdom of Bahrain and the US are well on course to promoting the trade zone as a regional centre for trade, manufacturing, logistics and distribution among American companies in Bahrain, as well as in the GCC markets and beyond.
An MoU was signed in 2021, establishing the trade zone which will contribute to boosting economic, commercial and industrial cooperation, and support bilateral trade exchanges between the two countries.
Bahrain has laid the foundation stone for the United States Trade Zone, or USTZ, on February 21, 2022, at the Salman Industrial City.
The USTZ was formally opened by Bahrain’s Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, Zayed bin Rashid Al Zayani.
The USTZ (United States Trade Zone), will facilitate export operations through Khalifa Bin Salman Port, Bahrain International Airport and King Fahd Causeway or any other ports established in the kingdom via specialized customs solutions.
“The availability of economic opportunities in the region is an ideal opportunity for American companies to invest and expand their business through the American trade zone in Bahrain”, said Zayed bin Rashid Al Zayani, the Minister of Industry, Commerce, and Tourism.
Bahrain and the US entered into a Free Trade agreement in 2006. As part of that agreement, 100 percent of the two-way trade in industrial and consumer products will flow between the two countries without any tariffs.
The USTZ is an integral part of Bahrain’s economic recovery plans and specifically the Industrial Sector Strategy that it launched in December 2021.
As part of the strategy, the kingdom aims to increase the industrial sector’s contribution to 14.5 percent of GDP to BHD2.544bn by 2026. The new strategy also aims to increase the percentage of contribution to overall exports to 80.1 percent, amounting to BHD2.475bn by 2026.
“It is my pleasure to formally open the US Trade Zone here in Bahrain, which stands as a prime example of the fruits of strong economic relations shared between our two countries,” said Al Zayani.
“As part of a more extensive free trade agreement, the US Trade Zone will facilitate increased economic relations with the US, therefore aiding Bahrain’s post-Covid economic recovery,” added Al Zayani.
The project will be built on 110,000 square meters of land and will reach 1.11 million square meters in the future.
These companies will also receive help from several Bahraini government agencies that support startup companies.
Companies operating in the US Trade Zone will get several advantages, most notably exemptions from customs duties for manufacturing, imported raw materials, construction machinery and spare parts.
The United States Trade Zone is one of the strategic projects announced by the Bahraini government for enhancing Bahrain’s economic position and competitiveness and achieving sustainable growth in accordance with Bahrain’s Economic Vision 2030.