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Preclearance Agreement to Improve Flow of Trade and Travel

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March 17, 2015

On March 16, 2015, Minister of Public Safety Steven Blaney and Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson announced a new preclearance agreement. This agreement is deliverable through the Beyond the Border initiative, as a means to improve the flow of legitimate trade and travel, while continuing to enhance, and ensure border integrity and security.

Every day over 400,000 people cross the Canada-United States border, along with over $2 billion in goods and services. Free and open trade between our two countries generates jobs, growth, and long-term prosperity.

Preclearance is a procedure to arrange for clearing customs or immigration in advance.  Border officers from the inspecting country carry out customs, immigration and agriculture inspections in the “host country” before allowing people, or goods pass into the inspecting country. The objective of preclearance is to expedite this process by making air travel more efficient, allowing travellers to avoid lengthy and unpredictable customs lines in the U.S., but also facilitating improved transborder flow through Canadian airports to increase competitiveness as hubs for in-transit-travel.

This new agreement covers all modes of travel, and will replace the existing Air Transport Preclearance Agreement. The creation of this new agreement ensures a consistent approach to all preclearance activities regardless of the mode of transportation. This single agreement will make it easier to implement and govern preclearance activities effectively.

For more information:
Beyond the Border: