U.S. security plan could hurt both countries.Northwestern Ontario--Border crossings are about to change.
In 1978, United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. President Ronald Reagan stated that the 5,000-mile border between Canada and the U.S. should stand as a symbol for the future.
"Let it forever be not a point of division but a meeting place between great and true friends," he said.
After Sept. 11, 2001, many of those "meeting places" have been challenged, as the current American government begins the implementation process of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative “WHTI” redirects here. For other uses, see WHTI (disambiguation).
The Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (or WHTI) requires all travelers to show a valid passport when traveling to the United States from areas within the western hemisphere. (WHTI WHTI Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative ). This law, which will come into effect Jan. 1, 2007, will require all travelers to and from the Americas, including the United States and Canada, to have a passport or passport cards.
The Canada-United States border relationship is an integral part of each country with more than 300,000 business visitors, tourists and commuters traveling between the two countries daily, according to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. the Council of State Governments. The Council says significant numbers of cross-border travellers are still without passports, including 56 per cent of same-day travellers from United States, 40 per cent of same-day travellers from Canada, 50 per cent of overnight travellers from the U.S. and 30 per cent of overnighters from Canada.
According to the Canadian Tourism Commission The Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC) was created in 1995 to promote Canadian tourism in order to capitalize on a major international industry.
The CTC states that it "is dedicated to promoting the growth and profitability of the Canadian tourism industry by marketing Canada as a , it is estimated that just one-quarter of Americans have passports. Those that visit the country, like many Canadians heading due south, get home with a driver's license Noun 1. driver's license - a license authorizing the bearer to drive a motor vehicle
driver's licence, driving licence, driving license
license, permit, licence - a legal document giving official permission to do something
or other photo identification and a birth certificate.
The commission report predicts a drop of 3.5 million trips from Canada to United States when the law becomes fully implemented in 2008. The result would be a loss of $785 million in potential tourism dollars. On a macroeconomic mac·ro·ec·o·nom·ics
n. (used with a sing. verb)
The study of the overall aspects and workings of a national economy, such as income, output, and the interrelationship among diverse economic sectors. scale, the report also states that there will be 7.7 million fewer trips by Americans into Canada, representing a loss of $1.7 billion.
The reality is Americans coming into northwestern Ontario Northwestern Ontario is the region within the Canadian province of Ontario which lies north and west of Lake Superior, and west of Hudson Bay and James Bay. It includes most of subarctic Ontario. are least likely to possess passports, according to the spokesperson for the informal Fort Frances passport border committee and Fort Frances Times publisher, Jim Cumming. Yet, they are most likely to possess 40 per cent of the guns crossing the border, since many of them come to hunt wild game. If the passport law becomes active, much of the region will see a further decline in American visitors and tourism dollars.
In 2002-2003, there were 15,000 people employed in the Patricia District, the Northwestern Ontario Tourism Association states. A recent report has revealed that almost 3,500 jobs have been lost since. Between 2001 and 2005, entries to Ontario by Americans dropped by 35 per cent, according to the Ministry of Tourism's Performance Update. Another 10-per-cent reduction is expected in northwestern Ontario as a result of the passport issue, Cumming says.
"The tourism industry is dying a death of a thousand cuts."
Small mom-and-pop tourism businesses are disappearing, but no organization has tallied the economic fallout of this, he says.
A double-edged sword
The ramifications ramifications npl → Auswirkungen pl of the WHTI will also hit United States.
Americans will be able to come into Canada without a passport, but won't be able to return home. The situation becomes even more complex than that because in Canada they would be considered an illegal alien, Cumming says.
So to ensure Canada does not get flooded with "illegal aliens," Canadian customs must comply with United States law, ensuring Americans crossing the border have a passport and can get home.
Tannis Drysdale, a town councillor in Fort Frances, says she is respectful of the right Americans have in protecting their homeland but she is "upset when they try and import some of their values to our side of the border."
To prepare for the impending im·pend
intr.v. im·pend·ed, im·pend·ing, im·pends
1. To be about to occur: Her retirement is impending.
2. onslaught of passport applications, The State Department is hiring 500 more workers, almost a 50 per cent increase to its staff level.
A recent announcement by the Council of Tourism Associations of British Columbia states the American government will accept passport cards for entry back into the U.S., which the White House is proposing to use since they cost about $57, or half of what a passport costs.
Either way, Drysdale says the cost of crossing the border is still too high and could deter potential visitors from taking part in tourism packages in the future.
Writing editorials, complaining to MPPs and creating committees to challenge the law appears to be fruitless, Cumming says.
It appears that the "whole thing is being driven by southern United States The Southern United States—commonly referred to as the American South, Dixie, or simply the South—constitutes a large distinctive region in the southeastern and south-central United States. ," he says.
By KELLY LOUISEIZE
Northern Ontario Business Northern Ontario Business is a Canadian magazine, which publishes monthly in Greater Sudbury, Ontario. The magazine covers business news and issues in Northern Ontario.