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Canada and the U.S. Announce Prosperity-Enhancing Beyond the Border Pilot Project

Sunday, October 21, 2012 19:22
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(Before It's News)

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Oct. 21, 2012) - Canada and the United States today announced the official launch of the Prince Rupert pilot project that will facilitate greater trade and strengthen cargo security at the Canada-U.S. border as part of the Integrated Cargo Security Strategy in the Beyond the Border Action Plan. The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, made the announcement today in Vancouver with Jim Nealon, Deputy Chief of Mission from the United States Embassy and Anne Callaghan, U.S. Consul General.

"The Canada-U.S. relationship is one of the world's greatest trade success stories and we are working together not just at the border, but beyond the border, to increase our shared prosperity," said Minister Fast. "Accelerating the movement of secure cargo between our two countries by removing red tape and other unnecessary barriers will contribute to job creation, strong economic growth and greater long-term prosperity for hard-working Canadians and their families."

The pilot project, in operation since October 1, 2012, is located at the Port of Prince Rupert and focuses on marine cargo. It is based on a harmonized approach developed by Canada and the United States which allows for the screening of inbound cargo arriving from offshore. As a result, there is increased security and the expedited movement of secure cargo across the Canada-U.S. border under the principle of "cleared once, accepted twice".

This pilot is the first of a number of pilots which will be undertaken by Canada and the U.S. to shape and inform the implementation of the Integrated Cargo Security Strategy. The strategy is part of the Beyond the Border Action Plan announced by Prime Minister Harper and President Obama on December 7, 2011.

"The pilots that will be implemented under the Integrated Cargo Security Strategy are key to the ongoing efforts to facilitate legitimate trade while still maintaining our security mission at the border," said U.S. Counsel General Anne Callaghan. "Harmonization of the cargo screening processes between the United States and Canada should result in a more efficient and secured supply chain and increased competitive economic posture."

Recognizing the benefits of ensuring that trade flows efficiently between Canada and the U.S. while also maintaining high security standards, this project is supported by industry and business groups in Canada.

"The Beyond the Border pilot will introduce efficiencies in cross-border cargo movements, further enhancing Canadian commerce with our largest trading partner, said Don Krusel, President and CEO of the Prince Rupert Port Authority. "And as the site of one of the two Canadian pilot projects, we anticipate building on the Port of Prince Rupert's reputation as a world-class trade gateway."

Minister Fast made the announcement on the calendar day that symbolizes the importance of exports to job creation in Canada. For this year, October 21, 2012, represents the day in the year when the average Canadian worker would no longer be working if Canada did not produce goods and services for export to the world, especially to the United States, Canada's largest export market.

"Exports support the jobs of one in five Canadians," said Minister Fast. "If Canada did not export, there would be 3.3 million fewer jobs, the unemployment rate would skyrocket to more than 25 percent, the incomes of Canadians would fall dramatically and hard-working families across the country would feel the consequences. Thankfully, our government understands the importance of exports to Canadian jobs. That is why we are pursuing the most ambitious trade expansion plan in our history - one that focuses on opening new markets so Canadian exporters can grow and succeed around the world."

Canada and the United States enjoy the largest bilateral trading relationship in the world, with two-way trade in goods and services reaching almost $709 billion last year.

For more information on the Action Plan on Perimeter Security and Economic Competitiveness, please visit the Web site For more information about Canada's pro-trade plan, please visit Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada.

Follow the Canada Border Services Agency (@CanBorder) on Twitter and Public Safety Canada (@Safety_Canada).

Fact Sheet

Integrated Cargo Security Strategy

On December 7, 2011, Prime Minister Harper and President Obama released the Beyond the Border Action Plan for Perimeter Security and Economic Competitiveness. As part of this action plan, Canada and the United States committed to developing a joint strategy to address risks associated with shipments arriving from offshore based on informed risk management. The Integrated Cargo Security Strategy (ICSS) will address security risks associated with inbound shipments from offshore and lead to expedited crossings at the land border.

The ICSS outlines how Canada and the U.S. will reduce duplication of efforts and processes, and work together offshore and at the physical border to facilitate the movement of secure cargo. It recognizes the importance of:

  • having common advance data requirements for information from importers;
  • sharing advance timely information prior to loading in a foreign port;
  • harmonizing targeting and risk assessment methodologies; and
  • sharing examination results electronically.

Prince Rupert

On October 1, 2012 the Prince Rupert, British Columbia pilot started, where Canada is examining offshore cargo (on behalf of the U.S.) which is destined to the U.S. via rail.

Our joint efforts will ultimately reduce barriers to trade, strengthening our economic competitiveness, job creation and prosperity, while increasing the security of our two countries.

The pilot will focus on in-transit containers arriving at the ports of Prince Rupert and transiting to the U.S. by rail through Canada. The U.S. National Targeting Centre (NTC) will risk-assess all in-transit cargo arriving at the Canadian port and identify the shipments of highest risk. The Canada Border Services Agency will be conducting examinations on behalf of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (U.S. CBP) for security and contraband.

Once the container is opened for examinations, border services officers will also be checking for wood packaging and soil infractions, meaning further protection for our forest industry and the great landscape of British Columbia. Any contraband or security concerns will be dealt with in Canada and information will be shared with the U.S. Examination results will also be shared via U.S. developed systems allowing for real-time sharing of information (both images and examination results). Containers will be secured with high security bolt seals for transit through Canada to the land border.

At the land border, U.S. CBP officers will see the high security bolt seal as well as know that risk has been negated, thereby eliminating the need for duplicate inspections. The Canadian NTC will continue to risk assess all cargo arriving as imports.


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