Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano today met with New Zealand Prime Minister John Key to highlight the strategic partnership between the United States and New Zealand to strengthen aviation security, protect critical cyber networks and infrastructure, and make the global supply chain system stronger, smarter and more resilient through programs such as the Secure Supply Chain Initiative - an international effort to enlist other nations, international bodies and the private sector to strengthen the security and resiliency of the global supply chain.
"The global supply chain is a powerful engine of jobs, commerce, and prosperity for both our nations, and it is our responsibility to do all we can to prevent attacks on or disruptions of this system by terrorists and transnational criminals," said Secretary Napolitano. "The United States will continue to work closely with New Zealand and all our international partners to strengthen international screening standards and develop and deploy critical technologies to better track and detect illicit goods."
Earlier this year, Secretary Napolitano met with New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully to sign a Joint Statement on Global Supply Chain Security - underscoring the shared commitment of the United States and New Zealand to build upon existing efforts and work collaboratively to make the global supply chain stronger by developing, advancing and implementing enhanced security measures.
New Zealand also participates in Program Global Shield - launched in 2010 by the Department of Homeland Security with the World Customs Organization, as well as the UN Office on Drugs and Crime and Interpol - to interdict precursor chemicals used in building improvised explosive devices (IEDs). Under Project Global Shield, more than 70 participating countries are currently sharing information with each other to ensure that chemicals entering their countries are being used in safe and legal ways - resulting in 22 seizures of explosive precursors, over 33,000 kilograms (33 metric tons) of chemicals seized, and 18 arrests reported by participating countries to date.
During today's meeting, Secretary Napolitano also expressed her condolences for the loss and destruction caused by recent earthquakes in New Zealand and reaffirmed the United States' commitment to strengthening emergency management cooperation through the Memorandum of Cooperation signed by Secretary Napolitano and New Zealand Ambassador Mike Moore in December 2010. Under the MOC, both nations will collaborate to enhance their respective disaster response and recovery capabilities through improved information sharing, including lessons learned from recent disasters, recovery experiences, social media in emergency management, and community resilience.
For more information visit www.dhs.gov.