The Minister of International Relations and La Francophonie, Christine St-Pierre, and the Minister of Transport, Sustainable Mobility and Transport Electrification, Jacques Daoust welcome a new legislation, Promoting Travel, Commerce, and National Security Act of 2016, by U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, and U.S. Representative Elise Stefanik that will mark a major step toward establishing pre-clearance services to Montreal’s Central Station and Quebec City’s Jean-Lesage International Airport.
“The introduction of this bill is excellent news for our relations with our American partners. The potential of setting up preclearance services at Montréal’s Central Station and Québec City’s airport will have a positive effect on trade and tourism by significantly reducing wait times when travelling to the United States. The services will be a regional economic lever for Québec and its partners,” indicated Minister St-Pierre.
“Preclearance is a key factor for improving trade with our American partner. This is a major step that will be very well received by all of Québec’s transportation stakeholders,” added Minister Daoust.
If passed, this bill, which aims to provide a framework for the rights and responsibilities of U.S. customs officers in Canada, will make it possible to ratify the Canada-U.S. Agreement on Land, Rail, Marine and Air Transport Preclearance signed on March 16, 2015. Preclearance is a priority issue for the Québec government.
Over the past few months, Premier Philippe Couillard discussed the matter with U.S. partners, most recently during his mission to Washington, D.C. The Minister of International Relations and La Francophonie, Christine St-Pierre, also promoted the issue during her mission to the U.S. capital in February 2015.
Premier Couillard appointed Raymond Chrétien in August 2015 to act as Québec emissary in the negotiations. Mr. Chrétien has already carried out two missions to the U.S. capital to facilitate progress on both these points.
Presse release: SCHUMER, GILLIBRAND, STEFANIK ANNOUNCE NEW LEGISLATION THAT WILL BRING MONTREAL-TO-ALBANY PRE-CLEARANCE PROGRAM ONE STEP CLOSER TO REALITY – PRE-CLEARANCE PROGRAM COULD SAVE OVER AN HOUR IN DELAYS AT NORTHERN BORDER CROSSING, IMPROVE LOCAL ECONOMY, AND BOOST TOURISM