Increased security procedures implemented since 9-11 have served only to thicken the Canada-U.S. border, increase the costs of imports and exports, and generally make life more difficult for anyone whose business relies on the flow of goods or people between our two countries.Democratic governments have certain obligations that they simply cannot shirk. Among these is border security. Given that governments have a duty to secure their mutual borders, it is to be desired that they do this in an efficient and cost effective way while recognizing and promoting the interests of their citizens.
In 2010, 75 per cent of all Canadian merchandise exports were expected to go to the United States with more than 70 per cent of these shipments being made by truck crossings. An even larger share of merchandise imports were expected to arrive by truck. Delays at the border due to congestion have been a problem for many years. But despite new trusted-traveller programs, the added security checks after 9-11 have created a de facto barrier to trade.
It seems clear that the emerging agreement between the US and Canada attempts to create this balance. Time will tell if it actually succeeds.