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UK citizens visa-free travel to the EU after Brexit

by Politicker 0 Comments

The EU Commission today (13 December 2018) proposed to grant UK citizens visa-free travel to the EU after the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the EU. It is separate to the ongoing negotiations on the UK’s orderly withdrawal.

http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-18-6402_en.htm

Is travel by UK citizens to the EU important to the EU ?

Residents in the United Kingdom undertook 53 million trips to the EU-27 in 2016, whether for business, leisure or other purposes, spending about EUR 28 billion while in the other Member States. Imposing a visa requirement on United Kingdom nationals who are British citizens could diminish the economic benefit for the Union that results from these trips, reduce trade relations and harm the economic interest of the Union.

For more details, see the following document by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (referenced by the proposal)

The economic importance of UK outbound tourism to the EU27 economies. September 2017

(copy pdf)

The EU is proposing that

The proposal would mean that UK citizens would not need a visa when travelling to the Schengen area for short stays of up to 90 days in any 180-day period. In the scenario where the UK leaves the EU without a deal, this would apply as of 30 March 2019. If a deal is reached, however, it would apply as of the end of the transition period, as outlined in the Withdrawal Agreement. This follows the Commission’s continued commitment that citizens’ rights must come first in the negotiations on the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.

This proposal is entirely conditional upon the UK also granting reciprocal and non-discriminatory visa-free travel for all EU Member States, in line with the principle of visa reciprocity. The UK government has declared its intention not to require a visa from citizens of the EU27 Member States for shorts stays for the purposes of tourism and business. EU rules on non-EU nationals travelling to the EU, such as those on border control, would of course apply to UK citizens once they are no longer EU citizens.

Today’s proposal is one of the preparedness measures needed as a consequence of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union. It is separate to the ongoing negotiations on the UK’s orderly withdrawal.

The proposal needs to be adopted by the EU Parliament and the EU Council. The EU Commission has called on both institutions to make quick progress on this proposal so that it can be adopted in good time before 30 March 2019.

However it’s worth noting the following paragraphs:

Regulation (EU) 2017/222610 establishing an Entry/Exit system (EES) further improves the security and management of the Union’s external borders. The main objectives of this regulation are to improve the quality of border checks for third-country nationals and to ensure a systematic and reliable identification of overstayers. The future Entry/Exit system (EES) will thus be an important element to ensure lawful use of the visa-free stays in the Schengen area by third country nationals and to contribute to preventing irregular migration of nationals from visa-free countries.

Regulation (EU) 2018/124011 establishing a European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) will close the information gap regarding travellers exempt from the requirement of being in possession of a visa when crossing the external borders. The system will determine the eligibility of visa-exempt third-country nationals prior to their travel to the Schengen area, and whether such travel poses a security, illegal immigration or high epidemic risk.

This means that UK citizens will be required to follow the requirements of the European Visa Waiver and Electronic Travel Authorisation System (ETIAS) which is due to be introduced in 2020.

Proposal for a Regulation amending Council Regulation 539/2001

EU Visa Proposal (copy pdf)

In the spirit of reciprocity, which the EU is keen on, will the UK consider a similar sysem for EU citizens wishing to visit the UK ?

ETIAS stands for EU Travel Information and Authorisation System

The system will check the security credentials and charge a fee to travellers visiting EU member countries for business, tourism, medical or transit purposes. The current EU visa application and vetting procedures for entering the Schengen area depend only upon the citizenship of the visitor and are cost-free. The ETIAS, like the ESTA, will streamline this visa process for those people who do not need a visa at present but will undergo additional security checks prior to allowing entry into the EU. The ETIAS travel authorisation will be mandatory for citizens of countries who currently do not require visas to enter Europe.

Information on ETIAS can be found at

https://etias.com

How will it work ?

Application – The ETIAS must be applied for online prior to arrival to the EU. Each eligible traveller to the EU will require an ETIAS.

Form fields – The following data will be required for each ETIAS application: personal biometric data (e.g. name, gender, data of birth, etc), passport or travel document information, EU member state of entry, background questions on an applicant’s health, criminal record as well as previous EU immigration history.

Fee – The cost of an ETIAS is €7, however, individuals under the age of 18 will not need to pay the fee.

Application process – Upon submission, each application will be checked across SIS / VIS / EUROPOL DATA / SLTD (Interpol) / EURODAC / ECRIS etc), the ETIAS screening rules as well as the ETIAS watchlist. If the application is matched to information from any of these databases, the application will undergo manual processing by the ETIAS Central and / or ETIAS National Units.

Application Decision – Usually, a decision will be reached by the system within minutes. If an ETIAS application is approved, it will be issued for a period of three years or until the date of the applicant’s passport expiry, whichever date is sooner. If an ETIAS application is denied, the applicant will receive a reason for the refusal as well as information on the country or authority deciding against the ETIAS being approved.

Boarding – The ETIAS can only be used for transit, tourism and business travel. As ETIAS will be checked by carriers prior to a traveller boarding by air, land or sea. If an ETIAS is not approved, the traveller will not be allowed to board the travel vessel, be it an airplane, boat or bus.

Arrival at the EU – Upon entry into the Schengen zone, a border guard will make the decision on admitting a traveller based on the information in the EES system, the approved ETIAS, as well as the travel documents and disposition of the traveller.

Galileo Project and the UK after Brexit

by Politicker 0 Comments

The Prime Minister has confirmed, in a Press Release, that the UK will not use Galileo for defence or critical national infrastructure after Brexit and will build its own Global Navigation Satellite System.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/uk-to-tell-eu-it-will-no-longer-seek-access-to-secure-aspects-of-galileo

The UK will explore options to build its own Global Navigation Satellite System that can help guide military drones, run energy networks and provide essential services for civilian smart phones. It will also work with the US to continue accessing its trusted GPS system.

UK Space Agency (UKSA) is currently leading the work, with the full support of the Ministry of Defence, and any British system will provide both open and encrypted signals, giving it the same range of commercial and security applications as GPS and Galileo.

British Armed Forces were due to have access to Galileo’s encrypted system when it is fully operational in 2026. However the National Cyber Security Centre and Ministry of Defence have concluded it would not be in the UK’s security interests to use the system’s secure elements if it had not been fully involved in their development.

The Prime Minister, Theresa May said:

I have been clear from the outset that the UK will remain firmly committed to Europe’s collective security after Brexit. But given the Commission’s decision to bar the UK from being fully involved in developing all aspects of Galileo it is only right that we find alternatives. I cannot let our Armed Services depend on a system we cannot be sure of. That would not be in our national interest. And as a global player with world-class engineers and steadfast allies around the world we are not short of options.

In August the Prime Minister tasked British engineering and aerospace experts to develop options and set aside £92 million for the plans. Since then over fifty UK companies have expressed interest in the project and a series of key contracts are now being tendered.

When commissioning options the PM set out that the British system must be compatible with the US GPS system, meaning that if either were subject to malicious attack the other could provide crucial positioning information.

The Prime Minister has also confirmed that the UK is in close contact with key international allies on plans for the national system.

The UK’s Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies would be used to provide the global network of locations needed for the necessary ground-based infrastructure and worldwide coverage.

Recent estimates indicate that over 11 per cent of the UK’s GDP is directly supported by satellite navigation systems and the Blackett review estimated that a failure of service could cost the UK economy £1 billion a day. Resilient and secure position, navigation and timing services are increasingly essential for defence, critical national infrastructure and emergency response.

The UK is a world-leader in developing satellite technology. Britain has a 40% share of the global export market for small satellites and makes major components for one in four of the world’s telecommunications satellites. Glasgow builds more satellites than any other European city. The UK has particular expertise in security, cryptography and satellite manufacture, and has manufactured all of the Galileo satellite payloads to date.

As part of the modern Industrial Strategy the government is committed to growing the UK space sector – helping create 30,000 high-skilled jobs by 2030.

How to prepare if the UK leaves the EU with no deal

Guidance on how to prepare for Brexit if there’s no deal.

The UK Government has published a series of technical notices. These notices are designed to inform people, businesses and stakeholders about steps they may need to take in the event of a ‘no deal’ scenario.

Last updated 13 October 2018

Details at

How to prepare if the UK leaves the EU with no deal

Notices have been published on the following areas:

Overview

  • UK government’s preparations for a no deal scenario

Applying for EU-funded programmes

  • Connecting Europe Facility energy funding if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Delivering humanitarian aid programmes if there’s no Brexit deal
  • European Regional Development Funding if there’s no Brexit deal
  • European Social Fund (ESF) grants if there’s no Brexit deal
  • European Territorial Cooperation funding if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Funding for UK LIFE projects if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Horizon 2020 funding if there’s no Brexit deal
  • The government’s guarantee for EU-funded programmes if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Funding for British Overseas Territories if there’s no Brexit deal

Driving and transport

  • Aviation safety if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Aviation security if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Driving in the EU if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Flights to and from the UK if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Operating bus or coach services abroad if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Vehicle insurance if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Rail transport if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Meeting rail safety and standards if there’s no Brexit deal

Farming

  • Farm payments if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Manufacturing and marketing fertilisers if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Receiving rural development funding if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Regulating pesticides if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Commercial fishing if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Plant variety rights and marketing of seed and propagating material if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Breeding animals if there’s no Brexit deal

Handling civil legal cases

  • Handling civil legal cases that involve EU countries if there’s no Brexit deal

Importing and exporting

  • Buying and selling timber if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Classifying your goods in the UK Trade Tariff if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Commercial road haulage in the EU if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Exporting animals and animal products if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Exporting controlled goods if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Importing and exporting plants if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Importing animals and animal products if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Trade remedies if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Trading with the EU if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Exporting GM food and animal feed products if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Exporting objects of cultural interest if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Trading and moving endangered species protected by CITES if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Maintaining the continuity of waste shipments if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Existing free trade agreements if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Importing high-risk food and animal feed if there’s no Brexit deal

Labelling products and making them safe

  • Appointing nominated persons to your business if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Developing genetically modified organisms (GMOs) if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Labelling tobacco products and e-cigarettes if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Producing and labelling food if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Producing and processing organic food if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Protecting geographical food and drink names if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Regulating chemicals (REACH) if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Trading goods regulated under the ‘New Approach’ if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Trading under the mutual recognition principle if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Travelling with a European Firearms Pass if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Vehicle type approval if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Control on mercury if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Control on persistent organic pollutants if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Regulating biocidal products if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Classifying, labelling and packaging chemicals if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Health marks on meat, fish and dairy products if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Export and import of hazardous chemicals if there’s no Brexit deal

Meeting business regulations

  • Accessing public sector contracts if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Broadcasting and video on demand if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Copyright if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Exhaustion of intellectual property rights if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Merger review and anti-competitive activity if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Patents if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Trade marks and designs if there’s no Brexit deal
  • What telecoms businesses should do if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Accounting and audit if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Providing services including those of a qualified professional if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Structuring your business if there’s no Brexit deal

Money and tax

  • Banking, insurance and other financial services if there’s no Brexit deal
  • VAT for businesses if there’s no Brexit deal

Personal data and consumer rights

  • Data protection if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Geo-blocking of online content if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Consumer rights if there’s no Brexit deal

Protecting the environment

  • Industrial emissions standards (‘best available techniques’) if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Reporting CO2 emissions for new cars and vans if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Upholding environmental standards if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Using and trading in fluorinated gases and ozone depleting substances if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Meeting climate change requirements if there’s no Brexit deal

Regulating energy

  • Civil nuclear regulation if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Generating low-carbon electricity if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Nuclear research if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Running an oil or gas business if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Trading gas with the EU if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Trading electricity if there’s no Brexit deal

Regulating medicines and medical equipment

  • Batch testing medicines if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Ensuring blood and blood products are safe if there’s no Brexit deal
  • How medicines, medical devices and clinical trials would be regulated if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Quality and safety of organs, tissues and cells if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Submitting regulatory information on medical products if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Trading in drug precursors if there’s no Brexit deal

Regulating veterinary medicines

  • Accessing animal medicine IT systems if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Registration of veterinary medicines if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Regulation of veterinary medicines if there’s no Brexit deal

Sanctions

  • Sanctions policy if there’s no Brexit deal

Satellites and space

  • Satellites and space programmes if there’s no Brexit deal

Seafaring

  • Getting an exemption from maritime security notifications if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Recognition of seafarer certificates of competency if there’s no Brexit deal

State aid

    State aid if there’s no Brexit deal

Studying in the UK or the EU

  • Erasmus+ in the UK if there’s no Brexit deal

Travelling between the UK and the EU

  • Mobile roaming if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Taking your pet abroad if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Travelling in the Common Travel Area if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Travelling to the EU with a UK passport if there’s no Brexit deal
  • Taking horses abroad if there’s no Brexit deal

Workplace rights

  • Workplace rights if there’s no Brexit deal

Brexit Technical Notices – Preparing for “no-deal”

Government departments have issued a number of Technical Notices which provide information on the effects of leaving the EU with “no deal” agreed between the UK and the EU.

They have been gathered into a collection and are available at

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/how-to-prepare-if-the-uk-leaves-the-eu-with-no-deal

Overview

UK government’s preparations for a no deal scenario

Applying for EU-funded programmes

The government’s guarantee for EU-funded programmes if there’s no Brexit deal

Horizon 2020 funding if there’s no Brexit deal

Delivering humanitarian aid programmes if there’s no Brexit deal

Civil nuclear and nuclear research

Nuclear research if there’s no Brexit deal

Civil nuclear regulation if there’s no Brexit deal

Farming

Farm payments if there’s no Brexit deal

Receiving rural development funding if there’s no Brexit deal

Importing and exporting

Trade remedies if there’s no Brexit deal

Trading with the EU if there’s no Brexit deal

Classifying your goods in the UK Trade Tariff if there’s no Brexit deal

Exporting controlled goods if there’s no Brexit deal

Labelling products and making them safe

Labelling tobacco products and e-cigarettes if there’s no Brexit deal

Developing genetically modified organisms (GMOs) if there’s no Brexit deal

Producing and processing organic food if there’s no Brexit deal

Money and tax

VAT for businesses if there’s no Brexit deal

Banking, insurance and other financial services if there’s no Brexit deal

Regulating medicines and medical equipment

Batch testing medicines if there’s no Brexit deal

Ensuring blood and blood products are safe if there’s no Brexit deal

How medicines, medical devices and clinical trials would be regulated if there’s no Brexit deal

Submitting regulatory information on medical products if there’s no Brexit deal

Quality and safety of organs, tissues and cells if there’s no Brexit deal

State aid

State aid if there’s no Brexit deal

Studying in the UK or EU

Erasmus+ in the UK if there’s no Brexit deal

Workplace rights

Workplace rights if there’s no Brexit deal

UK Government’s preparations for a no deal scenario

A document that puts the Government’s technical notices in context, explaining the current progress in negotiations and the circumstances in which a no deal scenario might materialise.

It also explains the government’s overarching approach to preparing the UK for this outcome in order to minimise disruption and ensure a smooth and orderly exit in all scenarios.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-governments-preparations-for-a-no-deal-scenario

Purpose of this notice

As announced by the Prime Minister and Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union on 18 July 2018, the government will be publishing a series of technical notices during August and September. Today we are publishing the first 25 of these notices and will publish more during September.

These notices will set out information to allow businesses and citizens to understand what they would need to do in a ‘no deal’ scenario, so they can make informed plans and preparations.

A scenario in which the UK leaves the EU without agreement (a ‘no deal’ scenario) remains unlikely given the mutual interests of the UK and the EU in securing a negotiated outcome. Following the publication of the UK government’s white paper for the future relationship on 12 July 2018, we are working with the EU’s negotiating team at pace to agree the terms of our future relationship alongside the Withdrawal Agreement later this year. However, it is our duty as a responsible government to prepare for all eventualities, including ‘no deal’, until we can be certain of the outcome of those negotiations.

For two years, the government has been implementing a significant programme of work to ensure the UK will be ready from day 1 in all scenarios, including a potential ‘no deal’ outcome in March 2019.

It has always been the case that as we get nearer to March 2019, preparations for a ‘no deal’ scenario would have to be accelerated. Such an acceleration does not reflect an increased likelihood of a ‘no deal’ outcome. Rather it is about ensuring our plans are in place in the unlikely scenario that they need to be relied upon.

This is consistent with the statement published on 6 July 2018 following the Cabinet’s away day at Chequers:

“It remains our firm view that it is in the best interests of both sides to reach agreement on a good and sustainable future relationship. But we also concluded that it was responsible to continue preparations for a range of potential outcomes, including the possibility of ‘no deal’. Given the short period remaining before the necessary conclusion of negotiations this autumn, we agreed preparations should be stepped up.”

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