On February 24, 2014, Canada and the United States officially launched Phase II of the truck cargo pre-inspection pilot at the Peace Bridge crossing between Fort Erie, Ontario, and Buffalo, New York. The pilot is a key deliverable under the Beyond the Border Action Plan issued by Prime Minister Harper and President Obama in December 2011.
Canada and the U.S. are using the pilot to test the concept of conducting U.S. Custom and Border Protection (CBP) primary inspection of U.S.-bound truck cargo in Canada in order to better manage their shared border and improve economic opportunities for both countries.
Minister Blaney, Minister Nicholson, Deputy Secretary Mayorkas, and Congressman Higgins toured the CBP truck cargo pre-inspection area in order to see first-hand how pre-inspection will work with a view to alleviate the challenges travelers and truck traffic face with congestion when crossing the bridge.
- In March 2013, Canada and the U.S. signed the Memorandum of Understanding that enabled the U.S. CBP truck cargo pre-inspection pilot project to take place on Canadian soil. Phase I of the pilot was launched at the Pacific Highway crossing between Surrey, British Columbia, and Blaine, Washington in June 2013.
- The objective of pre-clearance is to expedite the flow of legitimate trade and travel while ensuring border security and integrity.
- This is of prime importance to the Governments of Canada and the U.S., which have some of the highest levels of cross-border trade and travel in the world – activities that are vital to the economic prosperity of both nations.
From JJ Keller