Baltic Sea Region Territorial Monitoring System

Border crossings

Indicator definition

Two definitions are applied for this indicator: First, the number of vehicles passing the border as a function of the average annual daily traffic (AADT) approach the border control point; second, the average truck waiting times for border control procedures, differentiated by direction.

Indicator importance

Border crossings are still a major concern in the BSR region, in particular between EU countries on the one hand, and Russia and Belarus on the other hand. Complicated and lengthy custom clearance procedures, resulting in long waiting times at border control points, in particular for trucks, are still obstacles to free movements of goods and persons. Between two EU countries of the Shengen area, there are no customer clearance procedures anymore; however, here the number of vehicles passing the border is of main interest.

Findings

In terms of number of vehicles crossing a border, the two borders Denmark-Germany and Germany- Poland are the most important ones in the BSR region, followed by the border Belarus-Lithuania. There is also significant border crossing traffic between Poland and the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia as well as Poland and Ukraine. Between the Nordic countries, only the two southern border crossings between Norway and Sweden (E6 - Svinesundbroen, and E18) and the Oresundbridge between Malmö and Copenhagen yield significant traffic flows. The importance of these borders remained stable since 1995; the importance of the borders towards Russia (Poland to Kaliningrad enclave, and Narva border point between Estonia and Russia) declined somewhat in the period 2000-2005.

Custom clearance at border crossings at external EU-borders is still a major concern. In December 2013, average waiting times for trucks yield between one hour (border Poland and Ukraine) and 16 hours (border Poland and Belarus). Waiting times for outbound EU traffic are generally longer compared to inbound EU traffic, which offer only accounts for half of the waiting time.