U.S. Ambassador to Australia John Berry and Australia’s Minister for Immigration Scott Morrison signed a U.S.-Australia Visa and Immigration Information-Sharing Agreement on August 27, 2014.
This Agreement establishes a framework for information sharing between Australia and the United States to assist in the enforcement and administration of the countries’ respective immigration laws. Once specific information sharing arrangements have been developed and implemented, they will better protect the safety and security of citizens of the United States and Australia and facilitate legitimate travel and business. Increased information sharing will support better decision-making by both countries to confirm applicants’ identities, and identify risks and inadmissible persons at the earliest opportunity. It will increase safety and security, as both countries work to identify terrorists, violent criminals, and others who pose a risk before they reach our borders. Once sharing pursuant to the Agreement has begun, officers working on immigration and refugee protection will be equipped with more information to make decisions. This will better protect the safety and security of citizens of the United States and Australia alike and further facilitate legitimate travel.
Any information shared on travelers and asylum seekers will be handled responsibly and, as with other information sharing agreements, exchanged in accordance with relevant U.S. and Australian laws.