The Container Security Initiative
(CSI) will be operational at the port of Felixstowe for cargo containers destined for U.S. ports, making it the 13th CSI port, joining Rotterdam, LeHavre, Bremerhaven, Hamburg, Antwerp, Singapore, Yokohama, Hong Kong, Göteborg, Vancouver, Montreal, and Halifax. CBP and the United Kingdom signed a declaration of principles on December 9, 2002. As part of the CSI program, U.S. Customs and Border Protection has deployed a team of CBP officers to the port of Felixstowe to work targeting high-risk cargo containers destined for the United States. United Kingdom Customs officials, working with CBP officers, are responsible for screening any containers identified as a potential terrorist risk.
"I applaud the British government's strong support in helping to make a safer, more secure world trading system. CSI is essential in securing an indispensable, but vulnerable link in the chain of global trade: containerized shipping," Commissioner Bonner said. "CSI is the only formal program in operation today that is designed to detect and deter terrorists from exploiting the vulnerabilities of containerized cargo. We are getting CSI implemented in all of the ports that have signed on. We will continue to deploy teams to other participating ports as quickly as possible."
To date, 18 of the top 20 ports have agreed to join CSI and are at various stages of implementation. These ports are points of passage for approximately two-thirds of cargo containers shipped to the United States. They include (by container cargo volume): Hong Kong, Shanghai, Singapore, Rotterdam, Pusan, Bremerhaven, Tokyo, Genoa, Yantian, Antwerp, Nagoya, Le Havre, Hamburg, La Spezia, Felixstowe, Algeciras, Kobe, and Yokohama.
CSI consists of four core elements: 1) using intelligence and automated information to identify and target high-risk containers; (2) pre-screening those containers identified as high-risk, at the port of departure, before they arrive at U.S. ports; (3) using detection technology to quickly pre-screen high-risk containers; and (4) using smarter, tamper-evident containers.