Safe Harbor Newport Shipyard has been federally designated outside of U.S. Customs territory.

Safe Harbor Marinas, the owner of Safe Harbor Newport Shipyard, announced today via a press release that a Foreign Trade Zone (“FTZ”) has been established at their property, which includes property both on the water and on land. According to Safe Harbor Marinas, the FTZ can host multiple yachts simultaneously.

Foreign-Trade Zones are secure areas under U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) supervision that are generally considered outside CBP territory upon activation, according to CBP’s website. Located in or near CBP ports of entry, they are the United States’ version of what is known internationally as free-trade zones.

Safe Harbor Newport Shipyard’s FTZ is the only one of its kind in the United States outside of Florida, according to Safe Harbor Marinas.

“Our objective is to serve boat owners with excellence,” Eli Dana, General Manager of Safe Harbor Newport Shipyard says in a statement. “The new FTZ will allow us to do that better than ever before. It permits foreign-flagged vessels to be bought and sold to U.S. citizens right here in Newport, RI, and allows us to provide our high standard of service to even more vessels.”

According to CBP, some of the advantages of using an FTZ include the following;

  • While in the zone, merchandise is not subject to U.S. duty or excise tax. Certain tangible personal property is generally exempt from state and local ad valorem taxes.
  • Goods may be exported from the zone free of duty and excise tax.
  • Merchandise may remain in a zone indefinitely, whether or not subject to duty.

“We believe this is a win for the City of Newport, and the State of Rhode Island, yacht owners, yacht brokers, and Safe Harbor Newport Shipyard. There is no limit to how long a yacht can stay in the FTZ and the designated area will be monitored for security by our team and U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Boat owners in places like New York and Boston now have a great option in New England that has never been available to them before. We could not be more excited about it,” Dana concluded.

It is the intent of the U.S. foreign-trade zone program to stimulate economic growth and development in the United States, according to the CBP. “In an expanding global marketplace, there is increased competition among nations for jobs, industry and capital. The FTZ program was designed to promote American competitiveness by encouraging companies to maintain and expand their operations in the United States”.

Safe Harbor Newport Shipyard, formerly Newport Shipyard, was acquired by Safe Harbor Marinas, LLC in 2019. At that time Safe Harbor’s portfoilio of assets included 85 facilities across 19 states.

Here in Rhode Island, they now own seven marinas – Newport Shipyard, Safe Harbor Cove Haven (Barrington), Safe Harbor Cowesett (Warwick), Safe Harbor Greewich Bay (Warwick), Safe Harbor New England Boatworks (Portsmouth), Safe Harbor Sakonnet (Portsmouth) and Safe Harbor Wickford Cove (North Kingstown).

Ryan M. Belmore

Ryan M. Belmore is the Owner & Publisher of What's Up Newp. Ryan is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and serves on the Board of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and Lucy's Hearth. Send questions, tips, and story ideas to Ryan@whatsupnewp.com.