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Transport Secretary holds talks in Paris on border controls and decarbonisation

Transport Secretary Mark Harper met his French counterpart Clément Beaune in Paris to discuss efforts to decarbonise transport networks.
Transport Secretary holds talks in Paris on border controls and decarbonisation
  • Transport Secretary meets French counterpart in Paris to discuss the new EU Entry/Exit System coming into effect by the end of 2023 and wider decarbonisation work
  • agenda includes separate meeting with European Space Agency highlighting UK spaceflight ambition
  • visit reaffirms strong partnership between UK and France, underlining our shared values and supporting our national interests

Transport Secretary Mark Harper met his French counterpart Clément Beaune in Paris (9 February 2023) to discuss the implementation of the EU’s new Entry/Exit System (EES) by the end of the year and both nations’ efforts to decarbonise their transport networks.

Highlighting the importance of maintaining reliable, quick, and safe travel routes between France and the UK, the Secretary of State reaffirmed the UK government’s commitment to working alongside the French government to ensure any new system works for both countries and passengers.

Our two nations continue to build on the deep and longstanding Anglo-French relationship, and it’s been a pleasure to meet my colleague, Clément Beaune, to discuss our shared priorities.

This visit highlighted the importance of reliable transport links between our countries, our ongoing efforts to lead the world in decarbonising transport networks, and our commitment to securing the growth of international rail services.

Transport Secretary, Mark Harper

Whilst in Paris the Transport Secretary also held an introductory meeting with Eurostar’s CEO, Gwendoline Cazenave, to see first-hand Eurostar’s unique operation at Gare du Nord. The meeting shone a light on the important connections international rail services provide for millions of people each year, as well as the need to address border-related challenges, prevent lengthy queues from forming, and support the future growth and success of the sector.

Elsewhere, the Secretary of State met representatives from the European Space Agency (ESA), to discuss how ESA supports the UK’s spaceflight ambitions and the wider benefits of UK ESA investment.

This follows the establishment of the UK’s first operational spaceport in Cornwall, with the government also providing £31.5 million in grants to help establish vertical launch services from two spaceports in Scotland.

Also on the agenda was a meeting with Hiba Fares of the Paris Transport Authority Regie Autonome des Transport Parisiens (RATP), where the Transport Secretary heard about the authority’s roll-out of zero-emission buses and the recovery of bus services following the pandemic.

Upon arriving in Paris on Wednesday night, the Transport Secretary met with Getlink Group, which manages and operates the infrastructure of the Channel Tunnel and Shuttle services between England and France, to signal the UK’s willingness to support preparations ahead of the implementation of EES.

Source: GOV.UK

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