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Ham sandwiches in the new world after Brexit are contraband



The customs officer seized the ham sandwiches from the truck driver, who drove into the Netherlands by ferry from the UK, despite the man’s strong request to leave him at least the bread.

Other customs officials rummaged in the trunk of the car, arguing whether to seize a can of sardines that might be contraband.

These scenes broadcast on the Dutch current affairs program show that after the UK completed its separation from the EU on December 31 and new arrangements for travel, trade, immigration and security cooperation, the UK’s post-Brexit import rules have been strictly enforced. influences.

“Welcome to Brexit, sir,” a customs official said to the truck driver with a smile. “Can you leave the meat for me?” The driver’s pleading was fruitless. “I’m sorry,” the officer replied.

The European Union does not allow travelers from abroad to bring fruits, vegetables, meat or dairy products, or even for personal consumption. Now, those external countries include the United Kingdom.

Dutch Customs spokesman Bob Van Klauste said: “We are only enforcing regulations.” “As of January 1, it is no longer allowed to bring perishable goods from the UK to travelers.” He insisted that this is not picky.

He said: “We have the same rules for people coming from the UK at Amsterdam Airport.”

Due to the pandemic, the impact of the separation has not yet fully manifested. There is still relatively little traffic between the UK and continental Europe.

But the Dutch current affairs show “EenVandaag” followed a group of customs officials working in the port of Hoek van Holland. About a hundred passengers disembarked from the port of Harwich, England, on a ferry for nearly seven hours.

The plan quoted Rien de Ruijter, head of the local customs field team. He said that although the number of tourists is low now, he hopes that waiting time and frustration will increase after the travel restrictions are lifted.

He said: “Customs policy has changed, but this has not been communicated in England.”

In another scenario of the plan, a customs officer confiscated a can of sardines, claiming that no fish was allowed. But it turns out that the officials themselves are not completely familiar with the new regulations.Travelers are allowed to bring a total of 20 kilograms or approximately 44 pounds of fish into the EU

Another official looked at the jar and concluded: “This is not 20 kilograms.”

Druitt said: “I don’t think anyone in Britain expected this.” “But this is Brexit. This is a new reality that we have to deal with.”


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