Foreign-Trade Zone No. 79 received its Grant of Authority from the U.S. Foreign-Trade Zones Board in 1982; the City of Tampa is the Grantee. In 1989 the City of Tampa sponsored the formation of the Tampa Foreign-Trade Zone Board, Inc., now known as Foreign-Trade Zone No. 79 Board, Inc., a non-profit corporation created to administer and promote the FTZ No. 79 project. Foreign-Trade Zone Board No. 79, Inc. is made up of members representing the City of Tampa, Hillsborough County, the Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corporation, the Central Florida Development Council, Port Tampa Bay, Tampa International Airport, and the private sector.
In 1993, the FTZ No. 79 Project was expanded to add general-purpose sites, including the Zone Site at Tampa International Airport, to provide additional resources for the Tampa Bay based importer and exporter. In 1994, two Subzones (79A & 79B) were added. In 2000, the FTZ No. 79 project was again expanded to add a zone site that included locations on Hookers Point--located at Port Tampa Bay, at Tampa International Airport, and a pipeline from Port Tampa Bay to Tampa International Airport. All locations of that Zone Site are involved in handling jet fuel used at Tampa International Airport or Orlando International Airport for use on international flights. In 2013, FTZ No. 79 was approved to restructure under the Alternative Site Framework.
Currently, FTZ No. 79 has seven magnet sites and three usage-driven/subzone sites within its approved adjacent area for the regionally based importer and exporter. There is activity in three of the seven magnet sites. There is not any activity in the three usage-driven/subzone sites. The Grantee has contracted with Air General, Inc. to act as a Zone Operator at their Zone Site, which is located at Tampa International Airport. Pearl Warehousing also operates a Zone Site at Tampa International Airport. The activated portions of the Zone Site at Hookers Point are operated by Ports America, Inc. and Tampa Ship, LLC. A final zone site is comprised of three Zone Operators at separate locations that handle jet fuel. Aircraft Service International Group is located at Tampa International Airport. Kinder Morgan is located at the Port Tampa Bay. Motiva, LLC is located at Port Tampa.