Frank’s International in Iberia Parish is one step closer to becoming part of a foreign trade zone.
This would allow the company to be exempt from paying certain tariffs. The company says they hope this will generate 70 new jobs and over $9 million on their payroll.
Franks international which is situated at The Port of Iberia currently pays a tax on their steel that gets shipped in.
As District 8 Councilman Ricky Gonsoulin says, this detours projects to other companies outside of the country.
“We’re trying to keep other countries on a level playing level because we want to compete. Not only globally but domestically. Foreign countries are coming in and not having to pay additional costs,” Gonsoulin said.
Franks operates in 64 different countries they have multiple locations in Acadiana
“They’ve employed a lot of local people- they buy a lot of equipment and supplies in this area because it’s much easier to buy them here than have them trucked in,” said Craig Romero
Section 232 tariff was enacted in 2018. That tariff focuses on steel and aluminum.
“We’re not saying it has hurt our business, we just want it eliminated so we can compete with other companies,” Romero said
Frank’s says with this Foreign Trade Zone, they will generate over $9 million for payroll, creating 70 new jobs.
“We want our American jobs to be protected and to protect them and generate the revenue in our community,” Romero said.
The Foreign Trade Zone must be approved by the Iberia School Board next and from there it must be approved by the Foreign Trade Zone board.