The number of special economic zones worldwide has increased reaching 5.4 thousand in 2018, from about 79 in 1975. Free trade zones facilitate the accessibility of investors to the market and offer an encouraging incentive for foreign direct investments.
Overview of Special Economic Zones
Free trade zones, also known as special economic zones (SEZ) are areas in a country that have unique trade rules and regulations other than the country’s main regulations. These zones increase investments, especially foreign investments, as they provide the environment with supportive policies and infrastructure that reduce risk and increase incentives. In 2018, there were free trade zones in around 147 countries worldwide (1203478). Among the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, the United Arab Emirates had about 47 SEZ which is the highest in the region. Special economic zones provide entry to new markets with the extra support of having a neutral political zone.
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PwC. (December 23, 2020). Number of special economic zones in the world from 1975 to 2018 [Graph]. In Statista. Retrieved November 30, 2022, from https://www.statista.com/statistics/1203457/worldwide-number-of-special-economic-zones/
PwC. "Number of special economic zones in the world from 1975 to 2018." Chart. December 23, 2020. Statista. Accessed November 30, 2022. https://www.statista.com/statistics/1203457/worldwide-number-of-special-economic-zones/
PwC. (2020). Number of special economic zones in the world from 1975 to 2018. Statista. Statista Inc.. Accessed: November 30, 2022. https://www.statista.com/statistics/1203457/worldwide-number-of-special-economic-zones/
PwC. "Number of Special Economic Zones in The World from 1975 to 2018." Statista, Statista Inc., 23 Dec 2020, https://www.statista.com/statistics/1203457/worldwide-number-of-special-economic-zones/
PwC, Number of special economic zones in the world from 1975 to 2018 Statista, https://www.statista.com/statistics/1203457/worldwide-number-of-special-economic-zones/ (last visited November 30, 2022)