Once the Preclearance Act is passed, a new preclearance site in Vancouver will be on the short list for approval
VANCOUVER, June 23, 2016 /CNW/ - The Government of Canada remains committed to making it faster and easier to travel from Canada into the United States.
The Government is taking the necessary steps to enable more regions of the country to enjoy the travel and economic benefits of preclearance operations. We are building on the success of the existing Canada–U.S. air transport preclearance framework which makes air travel more efficient for almost 12 million passengers every year at eight of Canada's busiest international airports.
Last Friday, the Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, announced the introduction of the Preclearance Act in the House of Commons. When passed, the bill will enable the implementation of the Agreement on Land, Rail, Marine and Air Transport Preclearance between the Government of Canada and the Government of the United States of America. Once the Agreement enters into force, preclearance operations at new locations in the land, rail, marine and air modes, in Canada and the U.S. could be implemented.
The preclearance initiative builds on the significant progress made during the Prime Minister's official visit to Washington. There, Prime Minister Trudeau and President Obama agreed in principle to expand preclearance to a number of new Canadian locations, including Quebec's Jean Lesage International Airport, Toronto's Billy Bishop City Airport, Montreal Central Station and the Rocky Mountaineer.
- During the Prime Minister's official visit to Washington on March 10, 2016, Prime Minister Trudeau and President Obama agreed in principle to expand preclearance to Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, Quebec City's Jean Lesage International Airport, Montreal Central Station and Rocky Mountaineer.
- Existing preclearance operations enable travellers to enter the U.S. as domestic passengers and create a more comprehensive transportation network for them by giving them privileged access to non-international U.S. airports (i.e., those without customs and immigration facilities).
- The Agreement can only enter into force once both countries have enacted the required implementing legislation. New preclearance operations, such as Vancouver's Rocky Mountaineer will require approval by both countries.
"The Government of Canada is taking action on its commitment to ensuring a more efficient and secure border that contributes to Canada's economic growth and prosperity. On Friday, we introduced legislation required to implement the Canada–U.S. Preclearance Agreement. When it takes effect, the Agreement will provide the legal framework that will enable the expansion of preclearance operations in all modes of transportation – land, rail, marine and air – including Vancouver's Rocky Mountaineer, one of four locations announced by Prime Minister Trudeau and President Obama in March 2016."
– Honourable Hedy Fry, Member of Parliament for Vancouver Centre, on behalf of Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness
"Rocky Mountaineer is delighted by Friday's announcement and the continued work on expanding preclearance procedures for rail travelers between our two great countries. As a company in the business of providing people with unforgettable experiences, preclearance will ensure a seamless and efficient arrival experience for our guests travelling between Vancouver, BC and Seattle WA. Since 2010, Rocky Mountaineer has been a committed and active participant in helping to develop improved protocols for passenger rail in partnership with the working committee and we're pleased to see the Government of Canada's ongoing focus on issues such as this one. By collaborating with industry to improve the arrival experience for visitors, this initiative will support continued growth in Canada's important Tourism Industry."
– Steve Sammut, President of Rocky Mountaineer
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SOURCE Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada
For further information: Scott Bardsley, Office of the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, 613-998-5681; Media Relations, Public Safety Canada, 613-991-0657