TORONTO, Canada – US Ambassador to Canada Bruce Heyman and the Honourable Marc Garneau, Canada’s Minister of Transport, celebrated the completion of a two-year Toronto Pearson International Airport collaborative Security in Advance project on Tuesday, July 19, 2016 with Greater Toronto Airports Authority President and CEO Howard Eng, Canadian Air Transport Security Authority President and CEO Angus Watt and Randy Howe, US Customs and Border Protection Director of the Preclearance Field Office.
This project at Toronto Pearson, the fourth largest U.S. CBP port of entry to the United States, was developed and implemented to meet new U.S. CBP regulatory requirements and improve passenger flow for U.S.-bound passengers using the preclearance process.
The results of this project include:
• Process improvements for U.S.-bound passengers that reduce passenger congestion and improve passenger flow.
• CATSA screening that occurs prior to U.S. CBP processing, meaning:
o Passengers check baggage before moving through security screening and U.S. CBP processes, creating a more comfortable experience.
o Connecting passengers bound for U.S. destinations have a more streamlined and enhanced experience.
• In Terminal 1, 28 Automated Passport Control Kiosks were added to increase the total number to 56 kiosks.
Toronto Pearson, Canada’s largest and busiest airport, provides a vital link that cements the economic relationship between the United States and Canada. In large measure, that success is because of preclearance, a program that makes it possible for travellers to clear U.S. customs and immigration processes and get advance approval to enter the United States before boarding their flights to 50 cities across the country.
Toronto Pearson worked with airport partners including U.S. CBP, CATSA, the air carrier community, and numerous project teams to ensure a successful implementation of these changes.
Every day, greater than $2.4 billion worth of goods and services and 400,000 people cross the Canada-U.S. border. The benefits of this strong partnership are present in the preclearance program. In place for more than six decades, preclearance supports economic interests by improving travel and commerce with the United States; protects U.S. agricultural infrastructure from foreign pests, disease, and global outbreaks; and fosters cooperation with foreign authorities on diplomatic, law enforcement, and international security issues.
“It’s more important than ever to ensure that our borders effectively facilitate the secure flow of people and goods. The best way to do this is by strengthening our joint approach with our neighbours. The Security In Advance project is a great example of the progress we continue to make on Canada-U.S. border issues,” The Honourable Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport.
“The United States and Canada are both deeply invested in the facilitation of legitimate trade and travel across our shared border, while also working together closely to guarantee the security of our citizens. The Security in Advance project that we inaugurate today is a great example of our cooperation. Pearson airport is the busiest U.S. global air port of entry outside of the United States.
Security in Advance will provide safer, more seamless, and more efficient travel to the United States for Canadian and international visitors traveling through Pearson. I’d like to thank the Canadian government, GTAA and U.S. Customs and Border Protection for their work to make Security in Advance a reality,” The Honourable Bruce Heyman, U.S. Ambassador to Canada.
“Prioritizing the passenger experience is at the heart of everything we do at Toronto Pearson,” said Howard Eng, President and CEO, GTAA. “With the launch of this initiative, our security and Preclearance processes have become more efficient and passenger-friendly due to enhancements like additional security screening lanes and software that enables more passengers to use our Automated Passport Control kiosks.”
“Security in Advance is a great example of how industry partners can successfully collaborate to ensure the passenger experience at Canadian airports is as seamless as possible,” said Angus Watt, President and CEO, Canadian Air Transport Security Authority.
“CBP is proud to be a part of this collaborative project that will streamline the Preclearance process for the millions of travelers that fly through Toronto to the United States each year,” said USCBP Director of the Preclearance Field Office, Randy Howe. “This very important program began in Toronto more than 60 years ago and we are pleased to be able to add to our storied history at Toronto Pearson International Airport.”