Academic journal article Canada-United States Law Journal

The Canada-United States Customs Transaction the Invisible Border?

Academic journal article Canada-United States Law Journal

The Canada-United States Customs Transaction the Invisible Border?

Article excerpt

Session Chair--Jessica Lecroy

United State Speaker--Kathryn Friedman

Canadian Speaker--Cyndee Todgham Cherniak

United States Speaker--Laurie Tannous


MS. LECROY: Good morning, everybody. I am Jessica LeCroy, and I am the senior advisor at Bennett Jones in the Toronto office. (1) I will be the chair of this, the penultimate session of this wonderful conference.

We will be talking today about United States-Canada customs transactions, as indicated on the agenda. While the agenda shows the title of this session is The Invisible Border?, with a question mark, I believe it should more properly read The Invisible Border!, to indicate the imperative nature of this issue.

Speaking first will be Kathryn Friedman, director of Law and Policy Research at the University of Buffalo Regional Institute. (2) She will be reviewing her research conducted in collaboration with the Border Policy Research Institute, The Border Barometer. Cyndee Todgham Chemiak of Lang Michener (3) will be discussing ten distractions from border transactions. (4) Laurie Tannous, vice president at Sandler Travis Trade Advisory Services, (5) will then respond to Cyndee's presentation.

After each of the panelists' presentations, I will allow a few quick questions before the start of the next presentation. We will reserve longer questions for the full panel and discussion for the end of this session, as time allows. Kathryn, the time is yours.


Kathryn Friedman

MS. FRIEDMAN: Thank you very much. I would also like to thank Dan Ujczo for asking me to speak to you this morning to frame the panel conversation on border-related regulatory barriers. To do so, I refer you to the 2010 edition of The Border Barometer.

The Border Barometer is a collaborative initiative undertaken between the Border Policy Research Institute at Western Washington University and the Regional Institute at the University of Buffalo School of Law. The Border Barometer is a tool that provides a United States perspective on the performance of the Canada-United States border. (6)

In 2009, we published the first edition of The Border Barometer, wherein we looked at three ports of entry along the northern border: the Buffalo-Niagara region, the Detroit-Windsor region, and the Pacific Gateway region. (7)

We also developed indicators of border performance based on data collected at each region.

In particular, we constructed and examined porosity and infrastructure indicators, and mined data sets that illustrated how the border was performing with respect to each indicator.

The 2010 edition is updated, and has been expanded to examine eight ports of entry along the northern border, stretching from Blaine, Washington to Champlain, New York, and virtually every major port of entry in between. (8) The 2010 edition also features the same indicators of porosity and infrastructure, however, we have created three new sections. (9)

First, we have a section looking at the northern border trends. This section highlights trends across the entire border. From these trends, we were able to identify individual port variations. (10)

Second, we included a section on comparative perspectives. In this section, we describe four distinct metrics for measuring performance, and we compare and rank performance of each port according to each metric. (11)

Third, each port of entry in The Border Barometer has its own one-page snapshot summary that details performance. Detailed information on each port of entry is found in this section.

This morning, I cannot go through all of the data contained in this publication; however, I can use some of this data to provide a broader framework for our conversation. First, with respect to northern border trends, it should come as no surprise that trucking dominates commercial exchange between Canada and the United States. …

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