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ZEDE or “LEAP” Jurisdictions Ever So Near to Realization in Honduras

By: Fergus Hodgson - @FergHodgson - Sep 30, 2013, 11:23 am

While you may already be confused with the growing list of names under the startup city banner, here is another to add to the list: “LEAP zone” (legal, economic, administrative, political).

At Freedom Fest, Reason TV’s Nick Gillespie interviewed Mark Klugmann — another individual who participated in the Startup Cities Weekend in Guatemala — and got his insider’s view, as an adviser to the Honduran president, Porfirio Lobo Sosa. In particular, Klugmann recommends use of “LEAP zone,” since he does not know whether these zones will become cities. “The market will decide . . .”

These are not special economic zones. There are 3,000 special economic zones in the world. That’s great, [but] it’s a chair with one leg. You need to have a judicial system that is credible . . . and you need to have a system of governance that is more than a sand castle, where it’s not going to be washed away through demagoguery.

Perhaps most importantly, Klugmann shared that two communities — at least at the time of the interview — already had LEAP designation on the ballot for a vote in November. So in just a couple of months we may well know where two of these areas will be!

Fergus Hodgson Fergus Hodgson

Fergus Hodgson was the founding editor in chief of the PanAm Post, up until January 2016, and he now studies finance at Tulane University in Louisiana and Francisco Marroquín University in Guatemala. Originally from New Zealand, he has also lived in Argentina, Canada, Colombia, Ecuador, Ireland, and the United States. Follow @FergHodgson and his Facebook page.