Home Office To Spend £74 Million On New Border Force Vessels
Home Office to spend £74 million on new Border Force vessels to ‘protect’ the border.
Border Force vessels will be replaced with new boats as part of a £700 million investment to improve the ‘safety’ of Britain’s borders.
The current Border Force fleet, which is roughly twenty years old, will be retired. Eleven new vessels will come into service to help tackle organised crime and illegal immigration at a cost of £74 million.
The announcement was made ahead of Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s budget. The announcement also includes £628 million, which will be used to modernise and digitalise Britain’s borders. It also includes proposals of an American-style ‘Electronic Travel Authorisation’ for tourists wishing to come to the UK.
Electronic authorisations will launch in early 2023 and are expected to be fully in place two years later.
This year, the Border Force have ferried more than 21,000 illegal immigrants into the UK. The amount of arrivals by boat in 2021 is almost treble that of 2020.
The ageing vessels are rumoured to be auctioned off to various maritime organisations, although nothing has been confirmed yet.
Questions have been raised as to why the Home Office would spend such a vast amount of money on new Border Force vessels, when as it stands, they are nothing more than a Channel taxi service.
In a statement issued by the Treasury, Mr Sunak said:
“Protecting our borders and making it easier for us all to travel to and from our great nation is at the heart of our ambitions as a government.”
The Home Office have still not managed to deport a single illegal immigrant this year.
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