Remarks by Secretary Napolitano at the Border Trade Alliance International Conference [April 21, 2009]   [open pdf - 79KB]

From the remarks of Secretary Napolitano: "We don't want to damage economic security in the name of homeland security. United States, Canada, Mexico-all three economies depend on trade. So, part of our mission is also to protect against unlawful trade. Last year, Customs and Border Protection [CBP] had 14,700 seizures of goods for intellectual property rights violations worth over $267 million. So, you've got illegal drugs, human trafficking, illegal entrance, you've got illegal intellectual property. How do we balance all of those things? The first step is to respect the differences between the Northern and the Southern borders. What we do to protect the Southern border will not be the same, in all cases, as what we do to protect the Northern border. We know those borders are very different in terms of climate, geography, topography, et cetera, and we want to align ourselves, proportional to the threats we see while building appropriate mechanisms to facilitate trade. So, there are differences, some differences between those borders, but there are also similarities."

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