The Port of Calais has staged a no-deal Brexit rehearsal to test new systems ahead of the UK’s anticipated departure from the EU on 31 October. Michael Gove, the minister in charge of no-deal planning, witnessed the practice run during a visit to France on Friday afternoon.
The French minister of public action and accounts, Gerald Darmanin, met Gove at the port and they viewed the operation, according to a press notice about the visit from French government officials.
Darmanin told French radio station RTL on Friday morning that there would be a “dress rehearsal” period for a month, when companies and authorities would be able to prepare for systems post-Brexit.
Gove toured the site, saw how passenger vehicles were inspected and commercial traffic managed as part of systems being tested.
French authorities have reportedly recruited 700 additional customs officials and upgraded their technology in an effort to ensure the smooth transit of goods in and out of the European Union after the UK leaves.