Freight News, Road

FTA calls for Calais controls to be kept

[ August 6, 2016   //   ]

The Freight Transport Association says it is backing a Home Affairs Select Committee report calling on the Government to maintain juxtaposed border controls at Calais to protect the UK against terrorism and criminal gangs.

The Migration Crisis report – the result of a year-long enquiry by the committee – covers humanitarian and security issues including the ‘Jungle’ camp in Calais and the Le Touquet agreement which allows UK border controls to operate on French soil. It said that maintaining the agreement “must be a priority for the UK Government” because post-Brexit calls for it to end would be counterproductive and not in the interest of France or the UK.

FTA agrees that moving the controls to Dover would create major disruption on Channel crossings as infrastructure on the UK side is not scaled up for 100% checks on vehicles entering the country. Changing the current arrangement would cause major congestion in Dover port and lead to Operation Stack being recreated at sea with ferries instead of HGVs, FTA argues

FTA has participated in workshops in Brussels to help the European Commission produce guidance for commercial drivers to prevent people smuggling and it is hoped that this will come to fruition next year

Chris Yarsley said: “FTA welcomes the continued investments in security around both the Port of Calais and the Eurotunnel facility. The Association understands the extreme pressure the French government is under at the moment but would ask them to continue to deploy police and gendarmes to ensure the safe passage of drivers and their vehicles in the coastal area.”

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