Canada's Border Policy

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Furthermore, the Harper government had laid out a plan which would have led to collaborating and, to an extent, harmonizing border policies with the U.S. This action plan was set out in the Beyond the Border: A Shared Vision for Perimeter and Security and Competitiveness. One of its big proponents was to “establish a common approach to perimeter screening to promote security and border efficiency,” as well as to “push out the border [in order to stop] threats before they arrive either in Canada or the United States.” As such, one of the key elements of the CBSA's approach to “combat irregular migration is its ‘multiple borders strategy’ that strives to ‘push the border out’ so that people posing a risk to Canada's security and prosperity are…show more content…
and Canadian external borders” - which are changes that are already taking place. This is a viable option especially on the commercial trade side, because the aim of this particular approach is to be able to maintain “scrutiny at the border without harmonizing all policies is the ability to build a robust system of random inspections and post-audits of the companies that conduct the bulk of trade across the border.” Moreover, adoption of an external perimeter strategy would acknowledge the fact that “effective security is very difficult to implement with the current system, given the level of economic integration across the border, the unguarded nature of much of the long border, and the fact that gridlock would likely result from any meaningful level of inspections at existing checkpoints.” Some observers have actually argued that “security could be enhanced by focusing inspection resources on the external border where security efforts are feasible.” A system like this would “end or minimize delay and uncertainty costs at the border, and also reduce costs related to administration of general trade policies, such as customs control and brokerage.” The research on this…show more content…
And although the proposed ‘de-emphasizing of the physical border’ has its merits, there is something to be said for strengthening the physical, tangible border. For one, reducing the physical emphasis of the border may allow for more ease in the flow of contraband in both directions.Moreover, in this particular relationship, one universal challenge is “the United States status as a regional hegemon.” Without question, the United States is the “power player in the United States-Canada relationship.” This problem has particular relevance to the second policy option since harmonization, to whatever extent, is dependent on both countries. And with one country having the upper-hand, there may be problems in that aspect of harmonization. This problem is exacerbated by the “branding of Canada as a socially and politically different country from the U.S. provides.” Moreover, the reality of the “effectiveness of border controls, and debate over what should be the primary objective of such controls”, leads to doubts on “the concept of a North American security
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