Welcome and opening of 2008 annual conference.

AuthorKing, Henry T., Jr.

Session Chair-Dr. Henry T. King, Jr.

Speaker-Valerie McCall


DR. KING: I am Henry King, the Chair of the Canada-U.S. Law Institute Executive Committee, Chair of the annual conference. (1) On behalf of the Canada-U.S. Law Institute, Case Western Reserve University School of Law, and the University of Western Ontario Faculty of Law, I welcome you to our 24th annual conference which we have titled "The World's Longest Undefended Border, Gateway or Checkpoint?" It is my privilege and pleasure to now open the conference proceedings.

For the past 24 years, the Institute has assembled the leaders of government and industry, legal practitioners, scholars, and nongovernmental organizations in one forum to address the issues confronting the Canada-U.S. relationship. (2)

There are three principles that govern our conference. First, the conference is multidisciplinary in nature. (3) As I have just stated, there are actors from all of the various sectors of our bilateral relationship. (4) This is designed to encourage frank and comprehensive discussion among our participants.

Second, the conference is designed to enforce our cross-border relationship. (5) We encourage active dialogue with our panelists during the question and answer period as well as holding informal discussions between ourselves during breaks, meals, and at the hotel. I am happy to report that many professional and personal friendships have grown from this conference, including many of my own.

Finally, the subject of the annual conference is forward-looking in scope. (6) We look toward the future of Canada-U.S. relations as opposed to summarizing the past. (7) With that in mind, this year we address the post of 9/11 safe and secure border and the era of global supply chains.

I note that this conference follows several related Institute events that meet recent memory, which I am certainly very familiar with. Our 2001 conference addressed the impact of Federalism and border issues on Canada-U.S. relations. (8) Our 2003 conference addressed the Canada-U.S. security and the economy and the North American context. (9) And our 2005 conference, "Understanding Each Other Across the Longest Undefended Border in History." (10) In short, there are no issues of greater importance to Canada and the United States, and our continental national homeland and economic security and prosperity. (11) Nowhere do these concepts intercept, overlap, and, at times, conflict more than at the...

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