Corozal Free Zone
The closure of the Libertad Sugar Factory in 1985 created extreme hardship for the Northern region of Belize, particularly the Corozal District. The direct impact of this factory closure was a severe job loss. This resulted in thousands of Belizeans to migrate the United States of America and Mexico. In 1994, after distress the government passed the CFZ Act into law. The CFZ concept is to provide for job creation, attract domestic and foreign investment and generate revenues for the Government of Belize. Government decided to capitalize on the opportunity of being next door to the second largest trading block in the world, North American Free Trade Agreement, NAFTA.
The Corozal Free Zone is involved in several areas of social developments. Areas such as:
- Sports programs
- Scholarship programs – at the secondary and tertiary levels
- Cultural programs
- Medical program
The Corozal Free Zone’s mission is to become a dynamic economic investment engine for trade, manufacturing and services in an environment with legal, practical and business certainty in partnership with the government and people of Belize, investors and other stakeholders thereby becoming a major contributor to sustainable economic growth.
To promote economic growth to the country of Belize.
Belize has the advantage of incentive trade agreements with several countries:
Preferential Market Access with the Caribbean Community (CARICOM)
Preferential treatment from the USA under the Caribbean Basin Initiative (CBI)
Duty free goods to Canada under CARIBCAN
There are 5 port of entries for merchandise in Belize
- The Belize port where cargo arrives from all over the world. this port is in Belize city,which is located 80 miles from the CFZ.
- The big creek port which is located in the stan creek district which located approximated 200 miles from CFZ.
- The Benque Viejo border which merchandise arrives from Central America and the port of Santo Thomas from Guatemala. Benque Viejo border is 150 miles from the CFZ. the Benque Viejo borders with gutemala. This border is the main gate way for goods entering Central America from the CFZ.
- The Santa Elena which borders with Mexico is 10 minutes away from the CFZ. This border is the main gate way for shoppers and exporters to Mexico.
- The Belize international air port is 60 miles from the CFZ.The port facilitates air cargo to and from the CFZ.
The main way of transport from these ports are by land and their is a establish freight system. prices varies according to distance.
Belize has one international airport which links to the world trough the USA, Mexico and Central America. It is 1.5 hour drive from the international airport to the CFZ. The CFZ is reachable trough the mexican border or Belize customs territory.
- The CFZ employs 2500 to 3000 workers on a daily basis. salary rates are based on labor laws of Belize.
- Belize customs is 5 minutes away for facilitation of documents