U.S.-Japan Joint Statement
On Global Supply Chain Security

May 1, 2012


As long-time allies and major trading partners, with significant vested interests in the secure and efficient flow of goods, the United States and Japan share an appreciation for the disruptive threats posed by terrorism and natural disasters on the global supply chain.

Having witnessed the grave effects caused by the 3/11 Great East Japan Earthquake, not only on Japan’s production bases and infrastructure, but also on the global supply chain – in addition to attempted terrorist attacks after 9/11 – some of which exploited gaps in global supply chain security, such as the foiled sabotage of a U.S.-bound plane in 2010 – the United States and Japan share the view there is an urgent need to better address manmade and natural disruptions which could adversely impact our security, economic prosperity, and ways of life.

Both countries believe that efforts to strengthen the global supply chain should reflect the importance of enhancing security while facilitating trade, predicated on public-private partnership and a risk-based approach that utilizes advance information and technology to differentiate potential threats from legitimate commerce. Based on this shared belief, our joint efforts, such as the formulation and implementation of a mutual recognition arrangement between the United States’ Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) program and Japan’s Authorized Economic Operators (AEO) program, have offered a role model for international cooperation in this area.

Building upon existing cooperation on customs, transport, and maritime security issues, the United States and Japan hereby state their intent to strengthen their collaborative work to ensure that the goods, conveyances, facilities, and hubs within the air, land and sea environments that constitute the global supply chain are stronger and more resilient.

To further their collaborative efforts, the United States and Japan intend to:

  1. 1) Enhance the mutual recognition between the U.S. C-TPAT and the Japan AEO program to further strengthen supply chain security and facilitate bilateral trade;
  2. 2) Strengthen efforts initiated by aviation authorities to address the threats posed against air cargo laden on passenger aircraft by accelerating discussions on an air cargo security mutual recognition arrangement;
  3. 3) Coordinate regional capacity-building in the Asia Pacific to strengthen border, port, maritime, and aviation security, within their resources;
  4. 4) Support the development and deployment of new technologies to enhance the global supply chain security;
  5. 5) Where appropriate, pursue joint investigations related to counter-proliferation through relevant law enforcement agencies; and
  6. 6) Promote dialogue, information exchange, and sharing of best practices between the public and private sectors of the two countries.

The United States and Japan share the view that their bilateral cooperation should be accompanied by a coordinated international effort. The inherent intermodal nature of the supply chain necessitates better integration among relevant international organizations and stakeholders to ensure seamless security across all modes. The two countries intend to enhance support to the World Customs Organization (WCO), International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the Universal Postal Union (UPU), and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in their efforts to strengthen the global supply chain. At a strategic level, this agenda will strive to ensure that:

  • The global supply chain is resilient in response to large-scale events and disruptions;
  • Terrorists, transnational criminal organizations, and other illegitimate actors do not exploit the global supply chain to plan and execute attacks or illegal activities
  • The most critical elements of the supply chain system, such as transportation hubs and related critical infrastructure, are identified and protected from attacks and disruptions.

Working through these organizations, the United States and Japan intend to:

  1. 1) Improve information sharing and analysis to identify and respond to evolving threats by supporting the development and maintenance of risk management guidelines, such as the ICAO Aviation Security Working Group’s Risk Context Statement and the WCO’s Risk Management Compendium, and participating in the discussions in the WCO and other appropriate fora, such as ICAO, to address emerging global threats.
  2. 2) Assist development of robust global pre-departure information requirements in alignment with the discussions on the WCO SAFE Framework of Standards to facilitate screening and targeting of potential threats, and develop common definitions, standards, and recommended practices for high-risk air cargo;
  3. 3) Enhance information exchange between the two countries regarding advance cargo information, taking into account Japan’s legislation on Advance Filing Rules on Maritime Container Cargo Information (the 24-Hour Rule);
  4. 4) Stem the flow of illicit shipments of dangerous materials by actively reporting shipping information and intelligence through the WCO’s Program Global Shield, and facilitating the expansion of regional participation in, and support of, Global Shield;
  5. 5) Advance the development of AEO programs consistent with the WCO SAFE Framework of Standards, based on public-private partnerships and the mutual recognition between the U.S. C-TPAT and Japan AEO programs as best practices;
  6. 6) Under the UPU framework, with consideration for the unique requirements of international mail, enhance the security of international mail by fostering more stringent advance data requirements, establishing baseline screening standards, and developing response protocols; and
  7. 7) Guide the establishment of international standards for trade recovery collaboration and information requirements in APEC, WCO, and other appropriate fora.

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