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European Parliament backs new electronic entry/exit system

By Tea Mariamidze
Friday, October 27
The European Parliament backed an initiative of the Commission on October 25, which envisages the launch of a new electronic Entry/Exit system (EES) on EU territory, in order to strengthen borders.

Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, stated that the Entry/Exit System is a priority initiative which will modernize the management of the EU external border and contribute to the fight against terrorism and serious crime.

“It will replace the stamping of passports and will allow for an increased automation of border controls, improved detection of document and identity fraud as well as better monitoring of unauthorized short stays of non-EU nationals,” he stated.

Following the introduction of systematic checks on all travelers crossing the external border and with the new European Border and Coast Guard Agency being fully operational, the Entry/Exit System represents further concrete action towards making our borders even stronger, smarter and more secure.

“The Commission is now looking forward to the Council continuing to deliver on this political priority, so that the system can be up and running by 2020 at the latest,” Junker added.

The Entry/Exit System is one of the priority files identified in the Joint Declaration on legislative priorities for 2017 and is closely linked with the European Travel Information Authorization System (ETIAS), which was approved by the Civil Liberties Committee on October 19.

EES will register information on non-EU nationals, such as name, travel document, fingerprints, facial image, date and place when they enter, exit or are refused entry into the Schengen area.

It will apply both to travelers requiring a visa and to visa-exempt travelers admitted for a short stay of 90 days, who cross the Schengen area’s external borders.

Rapporteur Agustin Diaz de Mera said that the Entry/Exit System will allow for quicker and safer border crossings.

“It will also help to detect terrorists and other criminals hiding behind a false identity,” he stated.

The European Parliament webpage reports that the EES system will replace the manual stamping of passports and speed up border crossings, while making it easier to detect over-stayers and document or identity fraud.