The Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, shall establish and implement a program (referred to in this section as the “Container Security Initiative” or “CSI”) to identify and examine or search maritime containers that pose a security risk before loading such containers in a foreign port for shipment to the United States, either directly or through a foreign port.
The Secretary, in cooperation with the Secretary of State and in consultation with the United States Trade Representative, may enter into negotiations with the government of each foreign nation in which a seaport is designated under the Container Security Initiative to ensure full compliance with the requirements under the Container Security Initiative.
The Secretary, in coordination with the appropriate Federal officials, shall hold annual discussions with foreign governments of countries in which foreign seaports designated under the Container Security Initiative are located regarding best practices, technical assistance, training needs, and technological developments that will assist in ensuring the efficient and secure movement of international cargo.
The Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, may treat cargo loaded in a foreign seaport designated under the Container Security Initiative as presenting a lesser risk than similar cargo loaded in a foreign seaport that is not designated under the Container Security Initiative, for the purpose of clearing such cargo into the United States.
Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to interfere with the ability of the Secretary to deny entry of any cargo into the United States.