Key Terms


Approval by the grantee and U.S. Bureau of Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Port Director permitting operations to begin which allow the admission and handling of merchandise in zone status. This CBP process generally includes steps such as background checks, a written procedures manual, posting a bond with CBP, as well as a review of the security of the site(s) and the inventory control methods.

Admit, Admission

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection terms describing the shipment of merchandise into U.S. foreign-trade zones under CBP supervision (19 CFR 146.1). The word “admission” is used instead of “entry” to avoid confusion with CBP entry processes under Parts 141-144 of the CBP Regulations.

Alternative site framework (ASF)

An optional approach to designation and management of zone sites allowing greater flexibility and responsiveness to serve single-operator/user locations. The ASF was adopted by the Board as a matter of practice in December 2008 (74 FR 1170, January 12, 2009; correction 74 FR 3987, January 22, 2009) and modified by the Board in November 2010 (75 FR 71069, November 22, 2010

Entry for Consumption

The term that describes the general customs process of filing the appropriate CBP documents (including duty evaluation) that allows merchandise to be brought into the commerce of the U.S. (19 CFR 141). With respect to foreign-trade zones, this process occurs when merchandise is shipped from the zone into U.S. commerce.

Direct Delivery

A procedure for delivery of merchandise to a zone without prior application and approval on CBP Form 214; designed for low-risk, repetitive shipments whose ordering and timing are under the control of the operator. Approval to utilize direct delivery must be obtained from the Port Director.

Foreign-Trade Zones Board

Consists of the Secretary of Commerce (chairman) and the Secretary of Treasury, or their designated alternates.

Grant of Authority

A document issued by the Board that authorizes a zone grantee to establish, operate and maintain a zone, subject to limitations and conditions specified in this part and in 19 CFR part 146. The authority to establish a zone includes the responsibility to manage it.


A corporation to which the privilege of establishing, operating and maintaining a foreign-trade zone has been granted by the Foreign-Trade Zones Board. Grantee corporations must be either public corporations or private corporations organized for the purpose of establishing a zone project. Examples of public entities that might receive an FTZ grant include: a political subdivision (including a municipality), a public agency, or a corporate municipal instrumentality of one or more states. Qualified private corporations must be chartered for this purpose under a law of the state in which the zone is located.

Magnet site

A site intended to serve or attract multiple operators or users under the ASF.

Port of Entry

A port of entry in the United States, as defined by part 101 of the regulations of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (19 CFR part 101), or a user fee airport authorized under 19 U.S.C. 58b and listed in part 122 of the regulations of CBP (19 CFR part 122).


Activity involving the substantial transformation of a foreign article resulting in a new and different article having a different name, character, and use, or activity involving a change in the condition of the article which results in a change in the customs classification of the article or in its eligibility for entry for consumption.

Service Area

The jurisdiction(s) within which a grantee proposes to be able to designate sites via minor boundary modifications under the ASF.

Usage-Driven Site

A site tied to a single operator or user under the ASF.

Weekly Entry Procedures

A CBP procedure that permits zones and subzones to file a weekly entry for the estimated removals of merchandise destined for domestic consumption during the following business week. Once the Port Director has approved the entry, the operator may ship the products all week up to the quantity estimated.

Zone Grantee

The corporate recipient of a grant of authority for a zone project. The term “grantee” means “zone grantee” unless otherwise indicated.

Zone Operator

A corporation, partnership, or person that operates a zone or subzone under the terms of an agreement with the zone grantee (or third party on behalf of the grantee) with the concurrence of the Port Director of CBP.

Zone Schedule

To be kept by the zone grantee, the zone schedule includes the internal rules and regulations of the zone, as well as a statement of the rates and fees charged to zone users.

Zone Status

Merchandise can enter the zone in either domestic or foreign status. Domestic status can include foreign status goods where the duty has been paid and the goods entered for consumption. Foreign status includes privileged foreign, non-privileged foreign and zone- restricted status.