Superyacht owners with non-U.S.-built megayachts have another way to save themselves money stateside on service, refits, and even selling their yachts. Derecktor Ft. Pierce is the latest shipyard to receive Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) designation. It’s a significant benefit that opens a host of further benefits.
Briefly, an FTZ in the United States is a specially designated area into which goods can import duty-free. Additionally, companies operating within an FTZ can offer further financial benefits. They can eliminate the duty and taxes for their customers, for example. Or, they can either reduce or defer the duties.
So, how does this apply to Derecktor Ft. Pierce? Under its new FTZ status, foreign-built yachts can head there without having to pay the customary 1.5-percent import duty. (That import duty specifically applies to the value of the yacht.) For service or refit, should the yacht need foreign-manufactured parts, the shipyard and its suppliers can import them duty-free, too. In some cases, major refits will benefit from deferred duty, payable upon the completion of the work. However, once a refit is finished, the superyachts can depart U.S. waters without having to pay duties or taxes.
Furthermore, if the owner of a foreign-built yacht is selling her, the yacht can welcome interested American buyers duty-free. And, finally, the FTZ designation allows yachts to exit and enter the shipyard as needed—for owners’ trips, for instance.
Derecktor Ft. Pierce, which broke ground in late 2020, sits 90 nautical miles north of Fort Lauderdale. It specifically focuses on the 200-foot-plus (61-meter-plus), 900-ton plus megayacht market. In fact, it has a straps-equipped lift capable of hauling yachts to 1,500 tons. In late 2022, that lift made history, hoisting the nearly 240-foot (73-meter) Lürssen Coral Ocean (above). She comes in at about 1,300 tons. No other strap lifts globally have ever hoisted a yacht of her magnitude.
Derecktor Ft. Pierce is the latest in a string of yacht-specific FTZs in the United States. The first yachting-specific zone was Lauderdale Marine Center, in 2017.
Derecktor Ft. Pierce derecktor.com