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Chamber News & Press Releases

Chamber Welcomes Expiration of Canada Border Restrictions

The North Country Chamber of Commerce is welcoming the decision of the Canadian Government to allow its remaining pandemic-related restrictions at the land border to expire on September 30th.

"There is nothing more important to the special relationship of the U.S. and Canada than the free connections between the American and Canadian people," says Chamber President Garry Douglas. "Canada's mandated use of its Arrive CAN app was directly diminishing the resumption of cross border travel and we are pleased it will be abandoned as a mandate. Together with dropping the vaccination mandate to enter Canada at our shared border and the ending of random testing, we are on the cusp of normalcy after two and a half long years of separation and restrictions."

The North Country Chamber has been a strong advocate for a return to 2019 norms at the U.S.-Canadian border, including abandonment of the ArriveCAN app. It has reported cross border travel at Champlain having reached 70% of 2019 levels this past summer, but most border areas stuck at around 50%. "Restoring 2019 travel activity is important to both countries and the entire bi-national relationship," says Douglas, "and now we can all work towards that aim through the coming holidays and in 2023."

Douglas thanked the Canadian Government for listening to growing concerns and responding, and also thanked Congresswoman Elise Stefanik and Buffalo Congressman Brian Higgins, Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, State Assemblyman Billy Jones and others in both countries for their determined advocacy. "Now we need full reciprocal action by the U.S. government as we remain stuck with both countries moving in uncoordinated ways on border policies," notes Douglas. "We ask Homeland Security to drop its remaining restrictions at the U.S.-Canada land border starting September 30 so we don't have chaos and confusion and can resume cross-border travel freely."

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