LAS VEGAS-The planned one-million-sf World Jewelry Center here is now officially a Foreign Trade Zone. The designation, which means significant savings for major jewelry industry players, enhances the center’s appeal as a place from which to operate, making the 60-story tower more likely to be completed as planned.

Trade and customs consultant Tommy Berry, owner of PointTrade Services tells that being an FTZ means jewelry makers can import raw goods into to the building and then add value in cooperation with other tenants in the building without paying duties. After that, the product may be exported back out of the US without paying any duties at all or may enter US commerce at a reduced duty rate.

“We have been counting on approval of the FTZ…,” says WJC managing director Bill Boyajian, a former president of the Gemological Institute of America.

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