Accession Number:

ADA434718

Title:

Container Security: A Proposal for a Comprehensive Code of Conduct

Descriptive Note:

Corporate Author:

NATIONAL DEFENSE UNIV WASHINGTON DC CENTER FOR TECHNOLOGY AND NATIONAL SECURITY POLICY

Report Date:

2005-01-01

Pagination or Media Count:

38.0

Abstract:

Approximately 95 percent of the worlds trade moves by containers, primarily on large ships, but also on trains, trucks, and barges. The system is efficient and economical, but vulnerable. Until recently, theft and misuse have been as accepted as a cost of doing business. However, the rise of terrorism and the possibility that a container could be used to transport or actually be the delivery vehicle for weapons of mass destruction WMD or high explosives have made it imperative that the security of the shipping container system be greatly improved. Aside from the direct effects of an attack, the economic, social, and political consequences of a significant disruption in the transport chain would be staggering. In response to recent terrorist attacks the United States, the European Union, and international organizations and industry have instituted new measures to improve security in the shipping trade, including some procedures on containers. These include bilateral agreements involved in the Container Security Initiative CSI and the Proliferation Security Initiative PSI. These measures are useful, but shipping containers remain vulnerable. The authors recommend a comprehensive multilateral agreement on the use of containers in international trade rather than numerous bilateral agreements. This paper recommends, as a key step in this approach, the development and adoption of a comprehensive Code of Conduct that would be globally recognized and enforced for such an important component of global commerce. The implementation measures should provide incentives for the industry involved to comply with the obligations of the Code. The G8 and China, or the World Customs Organization, could take the lead in negotiating a global agreement on container security. A draft outline of such a Code is presented in the Annex to this Report.

Subject Categories:

  • Economics and Cost Analysis
  • Containers and Packaging

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE