Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, U.S. Customs and Border Protection Acting Commissioner David V. Aguilar and Assistant Secretary for International Affairs Alan Bersin today were in São Paulo, Brazil where they met with international counterparts and the American Chamber of Commerce.
"As our countries and societies become more connected and dependent upon shared systems of transportation, commerce, and communications, we must work together to address shared threats," said Secretary Napolitano. "We continue to collaborate with our international partners to strengthen aviation security and the global supply chain, and facilitate legal travel and trade, which are critical to our economy."
During her remarks at the American Chamber of Commerce, Secretary Napolitano highlighted areas of international collaboration, including joint efforts to strengthen global supply chain security and facilitate travel and trade. In January, President Obama signed an Executive Order announcing new initiatives to increase travel and tourism in the United States, establishing goals for processing visas and foreign visitors. As part of this Executive Order, the Department of Homeland Security will support efforts to increase non-immigrant visa processing capacity for Brazilians by 40 percent in the coming year and expand the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) and travel by nationals of VWP countries. The VWP enables nationals of 36 participating countries to travel to the U.S. for stays of 90 days or less without obtaining a visa.
While in São Paulo, Secretary Napolitano met with the Council of the Americas, São Paulo Mayor Gilberto Kassab, the São Paulo Secretary of Security Edsom Ortega and the Intellectual Property Rights Task Force to discuss information sharing, intellectual property rights enforcement, and combating counterfeiting and piracy of media.
Yesterday, Secretary Napolitano traveled to Brasilia and met with Minister of Finance Guido Mantega, Director of Customs Carlos Alberto Freitas Barreto, and President of the Brazilian Supreme Federal Court and Chief Justice Carlos Ayres Britto to discuss joint efforts to combat human trafficking, enhance aviation and global supply chain security, and facilitate legitimate trade and travel. Secretary Napolitano also met with Minister of Civil Aviation Wagner Bittencourt and Foreign Minister Antonio de Aguiar Patriota to discuss collaborative efforts to secure aviation security and combat transnational crime.
Tomorrow, Secretary Napolitano will be in the Dominican Republic to meet with President Leonel Fernández and Dominican Republic officials to discuss law enforcement cooperation and ongoing efforts to combat illicit trafficking.
Secretary Napolitano will later travel to Puerto Rico to meet with Governor Luis Fortuño, Resident Commissioner Pedro Pierluisi and Department of Homeland Security officials stationed in Puerto Rico.
For more information, visit www.dhs.gov.