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Tourism Security Agreement Seen as a “Positive”

By: David Real | Real Acapulco News - 02 December, 2010

(Acapulco, AN 2 December) According to local press reports, the governments of the United States and Mexico have signed an agreement with respect to the security and safety of tourists in both countries. The local tourism services community of Acapulco welcomed the accord as a positive sign, feeling that it might help restore the confidence of tourists from the United States when coming to Mexico.

The reality is much different from the impression created locally. In fact, the agreement was signed on Monday by Francisco Blake, Secretary of the Government of Mexico (SEGOB) and Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Homeland Security of the United States. The program is called the “Trusted Traveler Program” and is basically a method for expediting border crossings of persons unlikely to be passing illegally or carrying contraband. In effect, it is a way of using fewer customs and immigration resources on frequent and trusted travelers, so that government personnel can focus on persons of dubious or unconfirmed intent. The so-called “Trusted Traveler” program has much more to do with entering the United States than being in Mexico. Part of the confusion arises from Homeland Security’s offical translation of “Trusted Traveler” into Spanish. They called it “Viajero Confiante,” which means “Trusting Traveler.” This explains why some hopeful tourism business people viewed it with such favor.

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