US, Canada Ink Cross-Border Trade Initiative
New arrangement intended to enhance security for North American trade
WASHINGTON, DC - 10/28/05 - US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Robert Bonner and Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) President Alain Jolicoeur have signed a Container Security Initiative (CSI) partnership arrangement to "move forward on the commitment of both countries to securing North American trade."
The CSI partnership arrangement was signed during the 12th meeting since 9/11 under the US/Canada Accord on our Shared Border and Commissioner Bonner's last as Commissioner of the CBP.
"The United States and Canada continue to take significant steps forward in coordinated efforts to increase the overall effectiveness of the respective border security programs," said Bonner.
The new Initiative calls for the harmonized commercial processing and equivalent processes for commercial shipments, to the greatest extent possible, for goods moving between the two countries; the harmonization of timeframes for advance electronic cargo reporting; and the implementation of the "24-Hour Rule" for marine shipments headed for North American ports.
In addition, the CSI calls for collaboration in the development of automated risk assessment systems, tools and methods; and the improvement of infrastructure and border processing times.
The meeting was the latest meeting in a series regularly held by the heads of the US and Canadian border agencies.
Under the so-called Smart Border Action Plan, the two countries have worked together to achieve common goals in maintaining a secure border and facilitating trade and travel between the two countries.
On December 12, 2001, the US and Canada signed the Smart Border Declaration and launched the 32-point Action Plan which is based on the "secure flow" of both people and goods between both countries; the development of a secure infrastructure network; and developing an effective two-way flow of enforcement information.
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