Port of Dover authorities have warned they’re expecting another summer of disruption once the new EU border system is introduced.
Dough Bannister, CEO of the port, said that the new EU border Entry/Exit System, or EES, that’s set to be introduced in May next year could cause more delays.
Bannister commented that: “We need to see what the technology is going to be like and [we need] a sufficient amount of time to trial, test and train to use that technology before implementation.”
The system, which relates to the movement of people, will see the requirement for biometric checks for all non-EU passport holders (now including British citizens) to be registered the first time they enter an EU member state – including fingertips and photos.
Trials of the technology are taking place this month, though Bannister warned he expected the new procedures from May next year to take five times longer than current procedures – up to 10 minutes per vehicle.
“If the border gets sticky, it backs up very, very quickly.”
The impact of delays will also be felt by exporters shipping goods onto the continent with lorries destined for Europe getting caught up in the delays.
The Home Office has noted in response that it is working ‘to make sure passengers are prepared and do not experience unnecessary delays at the border due to new entry and exit system checks being introduced next year’.