CANADA AND THE UNITED STATES HAVE ENJOYED MORE THAN 25 YEARS OF CLOSE COOPERATION IN DEVELOPING COMMON BORDER AND SECURITY PROCESSES
The United States and Canada have the densest trade and travel bilateral relationship in the world. Our two countries have a long history of innovation, including the establishment of US Preclearance in Toronto in 1952. Two-way trade equals $800 billion per year and more than 300,000 people cross the border daily. Every minute of delay creates trade and travel inefficiencies. These costs directly impact the ability of Canada and the US to compete with other world regions.
The Perimeter Clearance strategy was developed between 1999 and 2002 and provided a roadmap for both countries to “clear once, accept twice” across the border. The initial Perimeter Clearance White Paper was a key input into the 2001 Smart Border Action Plan and guided the evolution of post 9/11 security and facilitation priorities. It culminated with the 2011 Beyond the Border Action Plan, where major successes included growth of trusted traveller and trader programs, automation and RFID implementation, partial elimination of security re-screening and several pilot projects to test in-transit goods movement.
Recently, the focus of activity is on the Canada–US preclearance relationship. As the 2015 Agreement moves to full implementation across all major transportation modes, we must now focus on external borders and allow legitimate low-risk goods and people to flow efficiently and securely. As the trading relationship deepens between Canada and the US, it is even more important now to expand border cooperation further to benefit travel, trade, tourism and the national security interests of both countries.
The Beyond Preclearance Coalition is a group of bi-national organizations with a vested interest in advancing the efficiency and security of the Canada–US border. Together, they commissioned a White Paper to explore the opportunities going forward. We welcome you to read the paper and contact coalition members if you have any questions.