Maritime commerce is the lifeblood of America’s economic prosperity and is inextricably linked to its national security. With 90 percent of imports and exports transported by ship, and $4.6 trillion in maritime economic activity sustaining 23 million jobs, it’s clear that the United States is a maritime nation. America’s natural waterways, navigable ports, protected harbors, and unfettered access to the world’s two largest oceans underpin its economic and national security. What is U.S. strategy to ensure that the U.S. Marine Transportation System is secure? And what role does the Coast Guard, specifically, play?
On March 25, the Foreign Policy program at Brookings hosted U.S. Coast Guard Vice Admiral Daniel B. Abel for a keynote address on the Coast Guard’s “Maritime Commerce Strategic Outlook.” After his remarks, Bruce Jones, vice president of Foreign Policy, led a panel of experts through a discussion on the interdependency of efforts to ensure the security, reliability, and effectiveness of the Marine Transportation System, as well as the impact of maritime commerce on the lives of the American people.
Following the discussion, the panelists answered questions from the audience.