It has become something of a tradition that a chancellor pulls a “rabbit out of the hat” – a measure to surprise and delight – towards the end of a budget speech. Those viewing the 56-minute statement had, after all, heard many of the main announcements before through a flood of leaks from the Treasury in advance of Rishi Sunak’s update to the Commons. Wednesday’s bunny remained firmly in its burrow but a case can be made for freeports being among the most important measures in terms of building an economic recovery from COVID-19 and a new avenue for trade following Brexit . Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player The headlines of the hour-long Budget speech from the Chancellor. Here, we will explain what freeports are but first reveal the successful applicants, as outlined by the chancellor, following a bid process that launched last October. Where will these freeports be? Advertisement Mr Sunak told MPs there would be eight freeports in England and he was in discussion with the other UK governments about locations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The English sites were confirmed as East Midlands Airport, Felixstowe and Harwich, Humber, Liverpool City, Plymouth,… Read full this story
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