Kampala, Uganda — Gemalto, in cooperation with local partner SCINTL, has been awarded the contract for the supply of a Border Management System (BMS); including airport self-service eKiosks at Entebbe International Airport.
The appetite for automated, self-service travel experiences is already evident in the success of electronic travel document checking systems, online check-in and electronic border gates.
Self-service solutions offer more personalised options for travelers, giving them greater control. Moreover, time saved through automation benefits airports, airlines, and travelers.
Self-service options can be introduced at every step of the passenger journey, from check-in to boarding, and they greatly enhance the overall airport experience.
Gemalto's e-Immigration solution uses fingerprint and facial recognition technology, combined with a passport scan to ensure swift and accurate identification of passengers leaving the country.
It is built on the Gemalto Visa Management System (VMS) that was first deployed in 2014 by the Directorate of Citizenship and Immigration Control (DCIC), under the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
"The new ABC - Automated Border Control Solution marks the latest step forward in the modernisation, enhancement of security of border control management in Uganda, delivering important benefits for visitors and citizens alike," said General Jeje A. Odongo, the Minister of Internal Affairs.
Entebbe International Airport, which is undergoing major expansion, renovation, and modernization, handled over 1.5 million travelers in 2017, but this number is expected to grow rapidly as business picks up in the tourism, oil, and manufacturing sectors.
The new eKiosks are expected to boost the airports capacity to handle the growing number of business and leisure visitors heading to Uganda.
"Rapid growth in international air travel is going hand in hand with profound cross-border threats such as terrorism, illegal immigration and organized crime," said Thierry Mesnard, VP Sales Africa for Gemalto. "With the introduction of advanced automated kiosks at Entebbe Airport, the Ugandan authorities are once again demonstrating their commitment to addressing all these challenges."
Once implementation of the e-Immigration solution is complete in 2019, passengers will enjoy the option of a rapid, self-guided pathway through border control, whilst authorities are provided with comprehensive, real-time data on departures.
Gemalto is an established technology partner for the DCIC. The existing VMS combines applications, processing and issuance for all pre-paid visas and permits, and incorporates a secure and convenient online portal, and biometric enrolment facilities in foreign missions and on arrival in the country. In December 2017, the VMS won the Uganda Government's JLOS ICT Innovation Award.
SCINTL will provide vital local support and know-how for a solution that encompasses supply, installation and maintenance.
"Overseas visitors are playing a key role in Uganda's economic development, and many will now enjoy the option of a safe, fast-track border crossing experience," said Cephas T. Bushuyu, Managing Director for SCINTL.
Across the world, airports and airlines are making it a priority to provide passengers with a unique, enjoyable and memorable travel experience.
According to its website, Gemalto has emerged as a world leader in digital security. It teams up with IER, a leading supplier of mobile devices and self-service machines for major transport networks, that is part of the Bolloré Group, a French transportation company. Together they designed IER Fly to Gate, an end-to-end self-service experience for travelers that improves the flow of goods and people.
The offer includes solutions to reduce waiting times, especially at security check, border control, and baggage drop. These cause the most negative emotions, frustration, and even fear among passengers.
An increasing number of airports across the world are already investing in automated border control, check-in, and bag-drop solutions that increase speed and efficiency, while maintaining high levels of security.
According to Gemalto, airlines forecast that self-service and automatic check-in will be used by 72% of travelers and will be a key differentiator in their overall passenger value proposition. It cites the Société Internationale de Télécommunications Aéronautiques (SITA), a member-based organisation working at airports around the world to transform the air transport community through technology, emphasizing cost-effectiveness, operational efficiency and cost reductions, as well as the sharing of new technology and innovation for the community's benefit.