U.S. - Canada Regulatory Cooperation Council Regulatory Partnership Statement By Transport Canada and the United States Department of Transportation

Transport Canada (TC) and the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) have established an ongoing regulatory partnership, as outlined in the RCC Joint Forward Plan, that will enable us to work together and with our stakeholders to increase regulatory cooperation and alignment.

To achieve this, TC and USDOT have:

  • Established high-level partnership governance between the organizations’ senior officials who oversee and help technical-level working groups identify opportunities for coordination on medium and long-term regulatory cooperation and alignment.
  • Implemented a bi-national work planning process that includes annual review of work plans.
  • Regularized stakeholder discussions to inform senior officials on regulatory alignment opportunities and provide input on future work.

We have agreed to work more collaboratively in developing and implementing our overall regulatory approaches in areas in which it would be beneficial to do so. We will move forward, where practical and in accordance with each country’s legislative requirements, under a structured framework that favors collaboration early in the regulatory and policy processes and affords stakeholders opportunities to provide input, inform strategies, identify priorities and discuss progress on the implementation of initiatives as appropriate.

This will be done by minimizing duplication and leveraging each agency’s capabilities in research, testing, policy development, and regulatory development. The ultimate goal is to develop regulations that benefit both country’s transportation safety while recognizing and understanding that each country is independent and may have, from time to time, specific requirements to suit its own domestic circumstances.

Responsibility for this regulatory partnership will be assumed by the Deputy Minister of TC in Canada and the Deputy Secretary of DOT in the U.S. The Deputy Minister and the Deputy Secretary will meet as necessary to review the continued relevance and timeliness of medium to long-term initiatives under the work plans. These meetings will also be used to discuss how and when TC and USDOT might seek to align their efforts in other fora or with other regulators. Working group leads will continue to be responsible for specific work plan activities and report on their progress through regulatory related events and associated stakeholder forums per the work plans, including whether the project is on track to meet work plan milestones, or any systemic obstacles that require broader consultation.

Stakeholders will be invited to provide input to help identify medium term opportunities and longer run directions based on consideration such as industry and consumer trends, and the potential implications those trends may have on their businesses, as well as applicable regulations. For example, stakeholders may provide information on supply chain management changes, the emergence of new technologies, new applications for existing technologies, new manufacturing processes etc. We will seek views from stakeholders in both countries with particular attention given to positions developed jointly by U.S. and Canadian stakeholders.

Annual Work Planning

To date, we have established five joint working groups to address current areas of cooperation between the USDOT and TC, as identified in the RCC Joint Forward Plan:

  • Connected vehicles
  • Motor vehicle safety standards
  • Rail safety
  • Transportation of Dangerous Goods
  • Aviation regulations

In addition to the technical working groups already in place, groups would be established if required, to achieve the medium-term opportunities determined through high-level discussions. Many of the participating sub-agencies of the USDOT and TC have developed regulatory cooperation guidelines to govern work plan collaboration.

On-going work planning will include regular meetings between regulators to discuss current and future regulatory cooperation, identify areas of mutual interest, share information, and establish priorities, as well as provide opportunities for regular stakeholder discussions. As part of the binational work-planning process, working groups will seek input from stakeholders. Inputs should be specific and include costs associated with proposed initiatives and ideas for their implementation. Working groups will consider stakeholder input in developing and updating their work plans.