12 Dec 2022
The Liverpool City Region Freeport is a major step closer to being open for business with government approval of a freight forwarding specialist as the Freeport’s first customs site operator.
SSO International Freight Forwarding are experienced freight forwarding specialists based in St Helens, offering a full range of import and export services.
They will now operate a designated customs site consisting of their brand new 50,000 sq ft secure warehouse in Haydock, with easy access to the M62 and M6, as well as Liverpool and Manchester airports, and the Port of Liverpool.
SSO international Forwarding’s relocation to the Haydock warehouse in 2021 was supported with a £125,000 loan from the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority’s Flexible Growth Fund.
The freeport will be officially open as soon as the government has accepted the final action points from the full business case, which will in turn release £25m in funding to be spent locally.
Once fully open, it is estimated that the freeport could create more than 14,000 new highly skilled jobs, provide £800m of investment and generate an additional £850m of GVA for the city region economy.
Steve Rotheram, Mayor of the Liverpool City Region said the plans have taken another “step forward”.
“The establishment of the Liverpool City Region Freeport has the potential help our drive to attract international investment, create more well-paid, highly skilled jobs for local people and build on our existing strengths,” he said.
“It is estimated that the freeport will add £850m to the local economy and contribute towards our plans to boost research and development and target green technologies to help us reach net zero by 2040 at the latest.”
He added: “But, for us, it means much more than that. I want to ensure that there is purpose behind this status that not only drives our economy, but fuels greater social mobility, innovation, and inclusion for our whole region – including the integration of our Fair Employment Charter.
“Today, those plans have taken another step forward. I will be pressing for it to be up and running as soon as possible so local people and communities can begin to feel the benefits.”