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Spending on IT for border controls is set to increase around Europe over the next four years, according to a new Kable report.

Expenditure across the EU will rise from €1.2bn this year to €1.74bn in 2010, accounting for 1.3 per cent of the total IT spend for the public sector, according to The European e-Borders Landscape.

National border controls are expected to account for the largest proportion, rising from €1.02bn to €1.29bn.

Kable does not anticipate any step change in spending in this area, as member states are already taking account of the risks from international terrorism. While the timing of national initiatives will be subject to some fluctuations, the report assumes a steady roll out across Europe.

Investment on strengthening EU external borders will rise from €207m to €381m by 2010, with money coming from EU funds and national budgets. While new member states in eastern Europe have completed the work on securing their borders, there is growing pressure on the southern borders of the continent and this is expected to provide the focus of future joint spending.

Support for freedom of movement within Europe accounts for €39m this year and is expected to rise to €67m, fuelled largely by spending on the Schengen Information System – a common database of information related to border security and law enforcement - and visa information systems.

National governments are expected to manage most of the investment, with the UK, Germany and France accounting for just over half between them.

The report makes the point that controls on the movement of goods and people are not just about immigration and combating terrorism, but economic development, the collection of revenues, fighting organised crime and public health and safety. The organisation of border controls varies from country to country, but they increasingly rely on the cooperation of bodies across national borders.

Anyone interested in obtaining a copy of the report should contact Rachel Colby on 020 7608 8411 or rachel.colby@kable.co.uk.

This article was originally published at Kablenet.

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