With 1.8 million asylum seekers (UN reports) crossing Western Europe’s external borders in 2015, the European border security agencies are facing challenges with a far greater reach than ever before. More than 1000 ISIS-trained jihadists returning to Europe every year, coupled with the surge of migrants to Europe are alarming concerns; as present capabilities of the European border, coast guard, intelligence services and immigration agencies simply cannot meet these challenges.
The EU-Turkey deal (if implemented) might lead to a significant decrease in the flow of refugees (by March-April 2016 the rate of migrants entering Greece declined by 90%). However, the agreement faces formidable practical, political and legal challenges (e.g., each and every one of the 22 EU parliaments has to endorse the treaty).
In the aftermath of the migration crisis and the Paris and Brussels terror attacks, a major overhaul of the Western European border security and immigration infrastructure, strategy, border security technology development and funding is already underway.
Following a 2010 to 2015 annual market growth of 10-13% the 2015 to 2020 annual border security market will surge by 104%.
The "European Smart Borders, Immigration Enforcement & Border Security Markets – 2016-2022" report is the most comprehensive review of the border security market available today. It provides a detailed and reasoned roadmap of this growing security market.
The European Smart Borders, Immigration Enforcement & Border Security Market is boosted by the following drivers:
- The Western European border security, coast guards, immigration agencies and intelligence agencies are ill-equipped to counter the surge of refugees and 21st century jihadists who use sophisticated means to return to the continent.
- The Schengen Area is comprised of 26 European countries that have abolished border control at their common borders. Several Schengen Area governments reinstated border checkpoints by 2015.
- Europe cannot build a wall to keep out refugees and terrorists or enlist millions of border guards who would need to watch every inch of its over 10,000 land borders and 80,000 coastlines.
- Europol estimates that up to 5,000 European jihadists have already returned to Western Europe after obtaining combat experience on the battlefields of the Middle East.
- On 15 December 2015, the European Commission presented a proposal for a new agency that would replace and succeed Frontex, having a stronger role and mandate, and forming a "European Border and Coast Guard" along with national authorities for border management.
- Of Europe’s approximately 50 countries, Russia has by far the longest coastline as well as the longest land border.
- Western Europe, the largest economy in the world with a 2015 GDP of approximately $22 trillion (vs. the U.S. $17.5 trillion), can invest "whatever it takes" to protect its citizens from the looming jeopardies of mass migration and terrorism using advanced border security technologies.
- The border security and immigration enforcement industry faces a considerable challenge in seeking to provide the necessary solutions to current and future threats. At the same time, this challenge presents multi-billion USD opportunities to the defense, ICT and security industries able to deliver effective functions, integrate systems, and maximize security and productivity per $ invested.
- According to European intelligence services, ISIS has approximately 5000 original European blank passports which can be used by jihadists returning to the EU.
- The EU and the rest of the European border security and immigration infrastructure enforcement market for products and services are served by local defense and security companies. Even with a preference for locally manufactured products, foreign products can usually strongly compete on the basis of cost-performance. They do not encounter any EU direct trade barriers or quotas. Non-tariff, indirect trade barriers may be the approval process of dual use goods, which include many security market products.