U.S. Department of Transportation
Office of Public Affairs
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, October 18, 2000
Contact: Dave Longo
Motor Carrier Safety Administration Signs Agreement to Participate in
Pilot Program For
Electronic Collection of Trade Data at Border Crossing
The U.S. Department of
Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) today
signed an inter-agency agreement with the International Trade Data System Board
of Directors to participate in the the International Trade Data System (ITDS) at
the federal ports of entry in Buffalo, N.Y. in 2001.
The pilot program in
Buffalo will be the first deployment of ITDS, which is an initiative of Vice
President Gore's National Performance Review.
"This data system
will help improve truck safety and traffic flow, thus helping to safeguard the
environment and lower the cost of inventories in transit," U.S.
Transportation Secretary Rodney E. Slater stated, "It is an outcome of
President Clinton and Vice President Gore's commitment to e-government, and we
are enthusiastic about our participation in this important project."
The ITDS Board, chaired by
the U.S. International Trade Commission and composed of federal agencies with
significant responsibilities for the collection, analysis or policy formulation
of trade data, is directing the project. The U.S. Customs Service is
coordinating the development of the required computer system, which will be
consistent with Customs' national architecture and share its systems for
communicating with the border.
ITDS is an integrated
government-wide system for the electronic collection, use, and dissemination of
international trade transaction data. When fully developed over the next five to
six years, ITDS will be the public and inter-agency interface for all
international trade and transportation transactions for the movement of cargo in
either direction across U.S. borders. Essentially, ITDS provides the primary
inspector with "one look" at the truck and driver's compliance with
key federal requirements before it enters the U.S.
interfaces with government agency systems and provides for advanced filing by
traders and motor carriers so federal agencies can pre-clear cargo, conveyance
and crew before they arrive at a border crossing. The trade community will
submit one data set to the government for all international trade transactions
to ITDS. That data set will comprise the information necessary to process both
the goods declaration and the transportation or conveyance declaration.
"We appreciate the
industry's voluntary participation in this important project," said
Acting Deputy FMCSA Administrator Clyde Hart Jr., who signed the agreement.
"It demonstrates the trucking industry's commitment to commercial vehicle
and driver safety."
Gene Rosengarden, chairman
of the ITDS Board of Directors, commented, "This marks an important
milestone in the development of the ITDS to provide a means for streamlining
import and export processes for carriers, shippers, and traders, as well as for
Between 1970 and 1997,
U.S. imports and exports grew 350 percent faster than GDP in 1992 dollars
increasing international trade from 11 percent of GDP in 1970 to 25 percent in
1997. Future forecasts project equally impressive growth rates for the
In addition to FMCSA and
U.S. Customs, the Immigration and Naturalization Service, the Food and Drug
Administration, and the trade and transportation communities are expected to
participate in this initial pilot in Buffalo.
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