Jurai Special Economic Zone (SEZ) (ジュライ特区, jurai-tokku), formerly known as Jurai City State (ジュライ市国, jurai-shikoku), is a coastal city at the northwesternmost point of Erebonia, north of the Lamarre Province. After its merger with Erebonia in S.1196, it became more attractive for investors to develop offices and an entertainment district there.
Jurai is the birthplace of Imperial Liberation Front ringleader C, whose motives were fueled by the merger.
Ripples of the Pillar of Salt
As a coastal City State, Jurai's position was strategically favourable for international trades with North Ambria and Remiferia. Located in a relatively small territory, the prosperity of the city and its increasing population of 150.000 inhabitants made it one of the most densely population locations in west Zemuria. Jurai, however, somehow managed to fit all its inhabitants within its current borders without getting into conflicts with its surrounding nations.
The Pillar of Salt disaster in North Ambria in S.1178, one of Jurai's foremost trading partner led to a strong decrease in trades to the point that even Jurai's economy started to suffer. While relying on the fishing in the northern seas and septium mining, Jurai supported North Ambria and its neighbouring nations hoping to expand its trade area.
Connection to Heimdallr
In S.1194, Jurai's mayor and the grandfather of Crow Armbrust, received notice from the Imperial government that Jurai would soon be directly connected to Erebonia's railway network. Being directly connected to Heimdallr was an appealing offer for Jurai, as it would no longer have to rely exclusively on its maritime network. The proposal was approved by the city counsel and subsequently Jurai's mayor, assuming the city state would restore its former glory within a single year.
Soon after Jurai was connected to Erebonia's railway network, the railroad to Jurai was blown up using explosives. The Imperial government, however, did not immediately restore the railroad but instead told Jurai to wait, criticising its lack of security measures and expressed worries if Jurai were to drag down Erebonia's own level of safety. Jurai's stocks plummeted and the inability to find a suspect for the explosion caused disorder in the city state.
Merger as Special Economic Zone
Jurai was visited by 3 years prior appointed Chancellor Giliath Osborne, who suggested to leave the restoration and safety in the hands of Erebonia and its Imperial Army, making it a member of Erebonia's growing empire. Wary of the proposal, Jurai's mayor sought alternatives but ended up with none. The city council, consisting primarily of highly influential merchants, considered the abolition of customs duty and benefits of a Special Economic Zone's tax benefits incredibly appealing. After heated internal debates, the voice of the city council overruled the mayor's, after which he resigned and Jurai became merged with Erebonia as Jurai SEZ in S.1196.