Let's talk

Freeports will provide an enormous boost for the North East economy.

Posted on 03 March 2021

Freeports will provide an enormous boost for the North East economy.

Peter Snaith, partner and head of manufacturing at law firm Womble Bond Dickinson, comments:

"We are excited by the government's decision to create a Freeport in our region through the support of the Teesside bid – this will provide an enormous boost for the North East economy and we retain hope for the North East bid in the next phase of Freeport announcements.

"The decision will enable us to transform our already strong position as a hub for international trade, whilst fostering the investment needed to regenerate parts of our region. It also shows a real willingness to take concrete steps along the long road to levelling up the country.

"Regardless of what the future holds for the North East bid, there will continue to be plenty of opportunities for our two sub-regions to work together to share best practice and strengthen the case for the wider North East as an inward investment destination and also as a hotbed for new technologies and fresh opportunities for generations to come.      

"We represent all manner of clients who will interface with Freeports and who stand to benefit from them in some way. Our multi-disciplinary team is keen to help deliver the government's objectives for the country and for the regions in which we operate.

"We have been tracking the government's initiatives in relation to UK ports for many years. In his 2016 report on the Freeports Opportunity Rishi Sunak referenced the potential of our ports on both Teesside and Tyneside to capitalise on the benefits that a Freeport can deliver for our region. Shortly after the report's publication we were proud to host a meeting with the Chancellor, as he is now, to help the port services and port user communities on the Tees and Tyne to fully appreciate those benefits and to motivate our community to grasp this opportunity."

About Peter Snaith:


Peter Snaith is a partner in WBD's commercial team and head of the firm's manufacturing sector group.  With over 20 years' experience of the sector, Peter advises major multi-national companies as well as fast growing SMEs operating in a wide range of sectors with respect to their strategic projects and day-to-day activities. As a contracts lawyer, he helps businesses ensure their contractual arrangements fulfil their commercial objectives with no unwanted consequences, balancing risk and exposure to potential liabilities with the need to get the deal done. Peter is passionate about the manufacturing industry in its broadest sense both in terms of its importance as a major employer in the North East of England and also in terms of the significance of the sector as a whole to the UK economy.