Over €2.5 Million Worth of EES Biometric Data Collection Equipment Will Be Installed Across Portugal’s Airports.


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As part of the Entry and Exit System (EES) of the European Union, border posts at Portugal’s airports will soon have new equipment for collecting biometric data. This will allow for even greater control over who enters and leaves the country.

According to a government document that was published in the Official Gazette, the new project is expected to have a total cost of around €2.5 million when taking into account the value of VAT. The Fund for Internal Security is expected to pay a total of 75% of the project.

Flag of European Union on table against mature female delegate signing contract
Flag of European Union on table against mature female delegate signing contract

The new regulation grants the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF) of the country the authority to bear the financial obligations associated with the performance of the contract for the procurement, as well as the installation and maintenance of biometric data collection at manual border check points, up to a maximum of approximately €2.5 million.

In its announcement of the new changes, the government of Portugal made reference to the strategic guidelines issued by the European Council. These guidelines, among other things, emphasize the need for effective management of the EU’s external borders through the new phase of the Smart Borders initiative. This phase of the initiative seeks, among other things, to simplify the travel process for passengers coming from third countries.

Sofia Batalha
Sofia Batalha

On the basis of the ordinance, which was signed by the Secretaries of State for Civil Protection, Patricia Gasper, as well as for the Budget, Sofia Bataha, the European Commission unveiled a proposal to introduce the EES system. This system seeks to collect the identity information as well as entry and exit data of nationals from countries that are not members of the EU who cross the EU’s external border. Additionally, this system aims to increase the level of safety for EU citizens.

Female employee of airport checking passports and biometric data
Female employee of airport checking passports and biometric data

In light of the fact that the SEF, in collaboration with Portugal’s Ministry of Internal Affairs, is in responsibility of the implementation as well as the integration of the Entry and Exit System, the ordinance stipulates the following, which must be observed in this regard:

According to the ordinance, “…it is intended to proceed with the acquisition and installation of biometric data collection equipment at manual border control posts, under the Smart Borders Project, 75 per cent of which is financed by the Internal Security Fund, including three years of technical assistance and maintenance, to comply with the various regulations of the European Parliament and the Council.” This will be done as part of the Smart Borders Project, which will also receive 75 per cent of its funding from the Internal Security Fund.

The Entry and Exit System will be implemented for all nationals of third countries who intend to travel to the borderless area of Schengen for any reason, taking both short-term and long-term stays into consideration. This system will be applied to all travelers.

In this system, nationals of countries that participate in the visa exemption program and those who participate in the visa regime are both considered to be part of the population.




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