Minister highlights “remarkable form” in the articulation of SEF and GNR at the borders

in News · 22-05-2020 13:57:00 · 3 Comments

The Minister of Internal Administration on 22 May recognized the "remarkable way" how the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF) and the Republican National Guard (GNR) proceeded to reestablish land borders, due to the covid-19 pandemic.

"I wanted here, fundamentally, to highlight the remarkable way in which the SEF and GNR established, with a very short time, eight hours between the political decision making and the reestablishment of the border, that [situation] that is recognized by the European Commission as an exemplary case of articulation in the control of internal borders", said Eduardo Cabrita.

The minister spoke to journalists, on the border of Vilar Formoso, in the municipality of Almeida, district of Guarda, after a visit to the Police and Customs Cooperation Centre (CCPA) of Vilar Formoso, where he learned about the activity carried out since the borders were restored.

The minister also highlighted the technological elements used by border security forces, such as 'drones' and contactless, "through SEFMobile", and "the professionalism and dedication" of the GNR military and SEF inspectors "that they achieved in a few hours to build a system that has worked very effectively" over the past two months.

"We currently have nine authorized crossing points 24 hours a day. We have one more point [of] just a few hours for cross-border workers. And, this operation, has restored a border control that has allowed us to fulfil three essential functions," he said.

The first function, according to Eduardo Cabrita, is "to contribute to the good results in controlling the pandemic that Portugal has shown". Secondly, to guarantee the flow of goods and thirdly the movement of cross-border workers, now extended to seasonal work.

He referred that the country, at this moment, is in a new phase: "We are in a phase where we will gradually start to face the easing of border controls".

"At this moment, the internal and external borders are under control until 15 June, but we will begin to consider changing this framework, both at the air and land borders, establishing, in particular, circulation mechanisms that allow our emigrants, that we want to enjoy their summer in Portugal, circulation during the next months of July and August", he concluded.

During this trip, the government official also attended the inspection work carried out at the Vilar Formoso Authorized Crossing Point (PPA).

The Vilar Formoso PPA is one of 10 PPA where the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF) and the National Republican Guard (GNR) carry out border control.

The control of land borders with Spain is being carried out since 23:00 on 16 March at nine authorized crossing points, due to the pandemic of the covid-19.

The operating border points are Valença-Tuy, Vila Verde da Raia-Verín, Quintanilha-San Vitero, Vilar Formoso-Fuentes de Oñoro, Monfortinho-Cilleros Thermal Springs, Marvão-Valencia de Alcântara, Caia-Badajoz, Vila Verde de Ficalho -Rosal de la Frontera and Castro Marim-Ayamonte.

According to the minister, about 200 thousand goods vehicles were inspected at the nine crossing points and "never waited more than fifteen minutes".

Within the scope of border control, tourist and leisure travel between the two countries is prevented, with only the transport of goods and cross-border workers being permitted.


to answer the 2 above, if you understand the laws, you would figure the answer pretty quickly. those foreign registered camper vans and cars must belong to Portuguese citizens and permanent residents of Portugal. I am surprised all the 1000s of Portuguese living in Switzerland are not doing the same

By tom from Algarve on 23-05-2020 05:02

Not only more campervans which we have also noticed but also way more cars with non Portuguese registration plates. Without flights, how are these people getting in ?

By David S from Algarve on 22-05-2020 11:11

In the last week I have seen motorhomes in the Algarve with Dutch, French and Uk registration plates. How are they entering the country?

By Terence McDine from Algarve on 22-05-2020 02:40
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