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Undocumented Migrants: English Channel

Question for Home Office

UIN HL3419, tabled on 15 November 2022

To ask His Majesty's Government what payments have been made to the government of France in each of the last five years in relation to cross-Channel migration; and what is their estimate of such spending for this financial year.

Answered on

29 November 2022

The UK and France maintain a longstanding relationship on tackling illegal migration at the shared border.

In January 2018 both countries signed the Sandhurst Treaty. The UK made a commitment of €50 million (£45.5m) to implement the terms of the Treaty, which adopted a “whole of route approach” to tackling illegal migration.

In 2019 the two countries signed the Joint Action Plan on Combatting Illegal Migration Involving Small Boats under which The UK committed €3.6m (approximately £3.25m). This was supplemented with a further €2.5m (£2.25m) dedicated to the deployment of gendarme reservists and preventive security measures at the French coast.

In 2020 the UK pledged €31.4 million (roughly £28.1 million) to support joint efforts to tackle the rise in small boat crossings. A further bilateral arrangement was reached on 20 July 2021 supported by UK investment of €62.7 million (approximately £54 million).

Most recently, on 14 November the Home Secretary agreed to a new multi-year strategic and operational plan with Minister Darmanin, supported by investment of up to €72.2 million euros (approximately £62.2 million) this financial year.

Joint work with the French has led to over 23,000 small boat crossings being prevented in 2021 and over 30,000 so far this year.

Alongside this we have dismantled 55 organised crime groups (OCGs) and made over 500 arrests supported by the work of the UK-France Joint Intelligence Cell.

Answered by

Home Office