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What is the UK’s new digital border plan?

As a part of a wider overhaul of the country’s immigration system, which will also include the introduction of a points-based migration system, Britain is planning to announce a “fully digital border”.

“We are introducing a fully digital border system to make Great Britain safer,” UK home secretary Priti Patel said.Britain had withdrawn support to be governed by the EU in 2016 with Brexit which came into effect on January 1, 2021.

We’re introducing a fully digital border system to make 🇬🇧 safer:

✅ Making it easier to ban serious & dangerous foreign criminals with a US-style ETA.

✅ Making the system easier to navigate for businesses.

✅ Allowing us to count people in & out of the UK for the 1st time. pic.twitter.com/CZhVAk680G

— Priti Patel (@pritipatel) May 24, 2021

What will the digital border look like?

  • The move means those coming to Britain without a visa or immigration status will need an Electronic Travel Authorisation — similar to that used in the United States — as part of plans to be implemented by the end of 2025.
  • Over 30 million applications expected to be processed every year
  • Digital identity checks will also be used to reduce the need to visit visa application centres.
  • Digitising the border will mean officials “can now count who is coming in and out of the country and whether they have permission to be there”.

“Our new fully digital border will provide the ability to count people in and out of the country, giving us control over who comes to the UK,” Patel was quoted as saying in the ‘Observer.

What are the benefits?

The post-Brexit reforms will include the border being managed digitally, which the government says will be easier to navigate for businesses and allow for the first time to accurately count people in and out of the UK.

“It is a sheer fantasy that we can give homes to anyone who comes here, British nationality law has not changed since 1983 and is now filled with anomalies,” the minister said.

“Our new approach will make it easier to identify potential threats before they reach the border. The British people will have confidence that the strongest controls are in place to keep them safe,” she said.

This approach will also make it easier to identify potential threats before they reach the border.

What is the need?

The British government has said that in the past 10 days, more than 140 foreign criminals have been removed from the UK, totalling more than 700 so far this year.

Last year, roughly 8,500 people arrived in Britain having made the perilous crossing across the Channel, one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes, in small boats.

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