Today, I am pleased to announce the release of the 2015 U.S.-Canada Beyond the Border Implementation Report, which can be viewed here. The 2011 Beyond the Border Action Plan set forth specific initiatives for achieving a shared approach to perimeter security and economic competitiveness, in which both countries work together to address threats within, at, and away from our borders, while expediting lawful trade and travel.
The fourth annual Beyond the Border Implementation Report highlights completion of some of our most ambitious initiatives, including the successful launch of an automated biometric-based (fingerprint) query capability that allows both countries to better counter identity fraud, strengthen identity management and provide valuable information to inform respective admissibility determinations. We also signed the historic Agreement on Land, Rail, Marine, and Air Transport Preclearance Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Canada, which, once brought into force, will enable new preclearance operations on both sides of the border, facilitating trade and travel for Americans and Canadians.
Additionally, in 2015 the United States and Canada:
In 2016, we’ve continued our shared approach to perimeter security and economic competitiveness, including during the visit of Prime Minister Trudeau in March. During that visit, we announced the important steps we’ve taken to assess threats at the earliest opportunity, including enhancing the exchange of national security information, and to complete an entry-and-exit information system to ensure the record of land and air entries into one country establishes an exit record from the other. We also worked together with Mexico to enhance security while facilitating trade and travel at the 2016 North American Leaders Summit (NALS) in Ottawa, Canada. There, we announced new efforts to expand eligibility across North America in our respective trusted traveler programs that speed the entry of pre-screened travelers. Today, representatives from the private sector, non-governmental organizations, academia, and unions will give feedback on the NALS at the first-ever Stakeholder Dialogue on North American Competitiveness hosted by the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. We look forward to hearing their perspectives on how the governments of the United States, Canada, and Mexico can work collaboratively to increase North American competitiveness.
Now in its fifth year, Beyond the Border has deepened and institutionalized U.S.-Canada cooperation to enhance continental security while facilitating trade and travel, and continues to provide benefits to residents, travelers, and industry in both our countries today. We intend to continue our robust partnership as we build on our shared accomplishments under Beyond the Border and NALS to achieve the vision outlined by our leaders for a collaborative approach to perimeter security and economic competitiveness.
Amy Pope is Deputy Homeland Security Advisor and Deputy Assistant to the President at the National Security Council