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Immigration: Skilled Workers

Volume 461: debated on Wednesday 6 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) which categories of individual are awarded fast track status through UK immigration and customs procedures; (132013)

(2) what the application process is for the award of fast track status through UK immigration and customs procedures at UK airports.

No individual is given privileged entry treatment by the Border and Immigration Agency when entering the United Kingdom.

The airport operator at Heathrow funds the staffing of Fast Track Immigration Controls. Fast Track offers travellers selected by participating airlines a discrete channel to the Immigration Control. The decision about who receives a fast track ‘ticket’ for this service is not an immigration one. At the Immigration Control, all persons seeking leave to enter the United Kingdom must satisfy the Immigration Officer that they qualify for entry in accordance with the Immigration Rules and will comply with any conditions attached to their leave.

IRIS (Iris Recognition Immigration System) is delivering a biometrically controlled automated border entry system for pre-registered travellers at selected ports in the United Kingdom. This initiative is part of the eBorders programme. All passengers enrolling are subject to rigorous checks to confirm nationality, identity and eligibility to enter the UK. This mirrors those checks conducted on arrival. Further information on IRIS is available from:

There is no Fast Track procedure for HM Revenue and Customs.