PM and U.S. President Obama announce shared vision for perimeter security and economic competitiveness between Canada and the United States

Leaders also create bilateral Regulatory Cooperation Council (RCC) to reduce red tape for businesses
Washington, D.C.
4 February 2011

Prime Minister Stephen Harper and U.S. President Barack Obama today issued a Declaration on a Shared Vision for Perimeter Security and Economic Competitiveness.  The Declaration establishes a new long-term partnership that will accelerate the legitimate flows of people and goods between both countries, while strengthening security and economic competitiveness.  The two leaders also announced the creation of a U.S.-Canada Regulatory Cooperation Council (RCC) and received the Second Report to Leaders on the U.S.-Canada Clean Energy Dialogue (CED).

“This Declaration demonstrates the continued commitment of Canada and the United States to ensuring our common security, while supporting economic competitiveness, job creation and prosperity within a secure environment,” said the Prime Minister.  “It builds on the remarkable security partnership between Canada and the United States that has helped keep our borders open to legitimate trade and travellers, and closed to criminal and terrorist elements.”

The Declaration will focus on four areas of co-operation: addressing threats early; trade facilitation, economic growth and jobs; integrated cross-border law enforcement; and critical infrastructure and cyber-security.

Canada and the U.S. will develop a joint action plan on perimeter security and economic competitiveness that will set out a range of initiatives in the four key areas to improve both countries’ ability to manage security risks, while facilitating the flow of people, goods and services.

A “Beyond the Border Working Group” composed of representatives from both governments will be established to implement and oversee work on the action plan.
“The Canada-U.S. partnership on security and economic competitiveness must evolve continually if we are to stay strong and address future security and commercial concerns,” added the Prime Minister.  “This declaration sets the stage for more effective, long-term collaboration in these areas.  It also respects the sovereignty of both countries and the privacy of our citizens.”

In addition to the Declaration, the two leaders also announced the creation of a United States-Canada Regulatory Cooperation Council (RCC) that will reduce red tape by making regulations in a range of sectors more compatible and less burdensome in both countries – which is especially important for small businesses. 

“The review of these rules is an exceptional opportunity to break down regulatory barriers and prevent new ones from being introduced,” added the Prime Minister.  “The main goal is to make it easier for Canadian and American firms to do business on both sides of our shared border, leading to more jobs and growth in both Canada and the U.S.“

Increased regulatory co-operation between Canada and the U.S. is expected to generate economic opportunities on both sides of the border, while improving the ability of regulatory agencies in both countries to achieve their objectives. 

Prime Minister Harper and President Obama also received the Second Report to Leaders on the Clean Energy Dialogue (CED) which lays out progress achieved in 20 joint projects in such areas as solar energy, advanced biofuels, and carbon capture and storage. The purpose of the CED, which was announced in February 2009 by the two leaders, is to enhance collaboration between Canada and the U.S. on the development of clean energy technologies aimed at reducing greenhouse gases and combating climate change. 

For more information on these initiatives, please visit the Prime Minister’s website