Denmark Moves to Reintroduce Customs Border Control

Politics » BULGARIA IN EU | July 1, 2011, Friday // 18:28
Bulgaria: Denmark Moves to Reintroduce Customs Border Control A camper van crosses the German-Danish border between Flensburg in Germany and Krusa in Denmark, on 10 June 2011. EPA/BGNES

Denmark's Parliament has voted to reintroduce customs controls along its borders with Germany and Sweden next week.

As of Tuesday, Denmark will deploy at first 30 customs officers to carry out spot checks at border crossings, Denmark's taxation minister Peter Christensen announced, as cited by DPA, after the Danish parliament gave its go-ahead on Friday.

"The vast majority of travelers will not notice a thing,' he said said, adding that there would be no traffic jams or other impediments for the tourists traveling to Denmark.

The proposals of Denmark's border customs controls made by the country's minority government has been described as an overture to the right-wing Danish People's Party. An opposition bill seeking to overturn the border controls was rejected by 55 votes against, and 50 votes in favor.

Dermanks has insisted that the reintroduction of customs controls are aimed at curbing cross-border crime, and they will not violate the agreement governing the border-free Schengen zone.

Germany has criticized the proposals, and the European Commission has warned that they could clash with the free cross-border travel stipulated by Schengen.

Back in May 2011, the EC even Denmark for explanations regarding the country's intention to reinstate control at its borders with Sweden and Germany.

The European Commission "will not accept" any challenge to the principle of freedom of movement of goods and people in the European Union, Commission spokeswoman Pia Ahrenkilde Hansen, who is also from Denmark, stated back then.

In early May, Denmark announced plans to set up customs booths at land border crossings, harbors and airports to make random checks of travelers, but vowed to adhere to the Schengen rules. The border controls are supposed to be introduced within two to three weeks, according to the Danish Finance Minister.

Denmark's decision came only a day before the scheduled emergency meeting of the ministers of interior and justice from the European Union Member States dedicated to the future of the Schengen zone.

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Tags: European Union, ministers of interior and justice, Brussels, Schengen, agreement, Denmark, European Commission, EC, Schengen Area, Schengen Agreement, border control, customs, customs agents
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