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Brexit: European nationals warned of change in travel rules when visiting UK in future

European nationals have been warned that the rules to enter the UK will change in autumn next year, meaning ID cards will no longer be accepted at the border.

Brexit: European nationals warned of change in travel rules when visiting UK in future
AFP

Britain's Home Office has sent out a reminder to nationals of EU countries as well as Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway that from October 1st 2021 national identity cards will no longer be valid to enter the UK.

From that date onwards nationals of all EU countries plus Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein will only be able to enter the UK using their passport.

However there will be some exceptions.

The Home Office states that these nationals can continue to use national ID card to enter the UK until at least 31st December 2025 if they:

  • have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme
  • have a frontier worker permit
  • are an S2 Healthcare Visitor
  • are a Swiss Service Provider

“You can still enter the UK using a passport which expires in less than 6 months,” the Home Office states.

Europeans have been told that after the end of the Brexit transition period on December 31st, 2020 they will still be able to travel to the UK without needing a visa if they are arriving for a short stay or holiday.

The end of the transition period will also have an impact for British nationals who wish to travel in the EU after January 1st 2020.

Until the end of the transition period British nationals can travel freely throughout Europe and must only make sure their passport is valid for the duration of their trip.

However the rules are stricter after January 1st.

“From January 1st 2021, you must have at least six months left on an adult or child passport to travel to most countries in Europe (not including Ireland),” the UK government says. 

For more on how travel will change in 2020 click on the link below.

REMINDER: What Brits in Europe need to know about travel after December 31st

 

 

 

 

 

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EUROPEAN UNION

EU court rejects Austria case against Hungary nuclear plant

The EU's second highest court on Wednesday rejected a complaint by Austria against a European Commission decision to approve the expansion of a nuclear plant in neighbouring Hungary with Russian aid.

EU court rejects Austria case against Hungary nuclear plant

Staunchly anti-nuclear Austria lodged the legal complaint in 2018 after the European Union’s executive arm allowed the expansion of the Paks nuclear plant outside the Hungarian capital Budapest with a 10-billion-euro ($12.4 billion) Russian loan.

The plant is Hungary’s only nuclear facility and supplies around 40 percent of its electricity needs.

In its decision the commission judged that the project met EU rules on state aid, but Austria disputed this.

The General Court of the EU ruled Wednesday that “member states are free to determine the composition of their own energy mix and that the Commission cannot require that state financing be allocated to alternative energy sources.”

READ ALSO: Why is Austria so anti nuclear power? 

Hungary aims to have two new reactors enter service by 2030, more than doubling the plant’s current capacity with the 12.5-billion-euro construction. The Paks plant was built with Soviet-era technology in the 1980s during Hungary’s communist period. 

The construction of two new reactors is part of a 2014 deal struck between Hungary’s right-wing Prime Minister Victor Orban and Russian President Vladimir Putin. The work is carried out by Moscow’s state-owned nuclear agency Rosatom.

The details of the deal have been classified for 30 years for “national security reasons” with critics alleging this could conceal corruption.

READ ALSO: Reader question: What are the chances of blackouts in Austria this winter?

Since the late 1970s, Austria has been fiercely anti-nuclear, starting with an unprecedented vote by its population that prevented the country’s only plant from providing a watt of power.

Last month, the Alpine EU member filed a complaint with the European Court of Justice over the bloc’s decision to label nuclear power as green.

In 2020, the top EU court threw out an appeal by Austria to find British government subsidies for the nuclear power plant at Hinkley Point in breach of the bloc’s state aid rules.

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