U.S. Customs and Border Protection senior management, together with counterparts from Servicio de Administracion Tributaria/Aduana Mexico, private sector partners from Kansas City Southern along with local congressional and municipal representatives gathered in Laredo to dedicate a processing building that will improve joint rail operations in the city.
Located close to the railhead of the Laredo International Rail Bridge, the rail processing building dedicated Thursday was constructed by KCS and enables Mexico Customs officers to work collaboratively with CBP officers.
The joint operations allow Mexico Customs to complete their outbound inspections and CBP to perform their inbound inspection processes simultaneously, eliminating unnecessary delays and duplication while maintaining security and facilitating lawful commerce.
The joint operations are coupled with increased training and information sharing designed to strengthen the effectiveness of security efforts while enhancing understanding of private sector rail operations to help better facilitate traffic flow.
The collaborative efforts are designed to help refine security while facilitating lawful commerce at a port of entry that has experienced a 16.5 percent increase in northbound rail traffic growth in 2017 and which is poised for increased growth in the future.
Among the key senior managers and dignitaries participating in the rail processing building dedication were CBP Deputy Executive Assistant Commissioner John P. Wagner, (A) Executive Director Sidney Aki, Director, Field Operations David P. Higgerson, Laredo Field Office, Gerardo A. Suarez, Government of Mexico SAT/Aduana Mexico representative, U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar, City of Laredo Mayor Pete Saenz, President and Chief Executive Officer Patrick Ottensmeyer, Kansas City Southern and Vice President Bernardo Ayala, Union Pacific.